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Sttata fer Jtmu IMtamtm ant €»* 






•UNnrERSn-y OF CALIFORNIA ^'^^^^''^^^OOgYe 

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CHAP* li 


J of rirtliiinf^f Prince R^genf t Speech on opeolng the Senioiu Debatei 
•A Ike AdAvca. Sir Franeit Burden's Motion conceiniiif the Regencj, - 1 

CHAP. ir. 

Proceeding contined. Vice Chancellor'i Bill. Sir Samnel Ro. 
Mfflj** Bilb to fanpnrrinK the Criminal Law, . • . • sg 


AffiOn continued.- State of the Financei. MrYawittart'tnew PlanofFi- 
KCb Ottfectiont wied against it. Armj Estimates* Bnglish and Irish Bodgets, 48 


Princes oT Wales. Her Letter to the Prince lU|gent. Proceedings of Pariia* 
aot oa this Saluect, •- ... <. .75 


AiUfB of Irelaad. Discnsslon of the Catholic Question in Parliament« Conduct of 
the Irkh Catholics, - - Od 


Africnn Afisirs. Declaration of the Britbh GoTemmcnt of the Causes and Origin 
of the War with America. Discussions in Parliament on the Sukgcct. £vent8 of 
the War, - 108 

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AAin of lodte. General View of the Rcasoiit for reftrlctlog the Monopoly eqjoyed 
by the Katt-lndia Compaoy. Sketch of the Limltatiom under which the Charter 
was renewed by Parliament, . . . • . . 194 


Spanish A Airs. Preparations latde t^ ^ffftaA^g t^ £aiifpalgn. Rapid Progress of 
the AiUed Amies. Battle of tittoria^ .. * • . • |39 


Spanish Aflisirs continued. Rapid Progress of the Allied Amies* St Sebastian and 
Pamplona inTested. Digression as to the DefpcdLp/ the British Army in conducting 
Sieges, --..-•..-158 


Operations of the Anglo-Sicilian Army In the East of Spain. Sir John Mnrray on* 
dertakes the Siege of Tarragona, which he afterwards raises abmptly. Lord Wil- 
liam Bentinck tues the Command of the Army, - • . • 167 


CHAP. xr. 

Spanisb Afkirs continued. Battles of the Pyletoeet. Fall of St Sebastian— of Pam^ 
pinna. Invasion of France by the British Army, • • . - 18.5 

CHAP. xir. 

State of Aftirs in the Korth. Progress of the Russian Amies after the Expulsion of 
the French from the Empire. Prussia joins the Alliance against Fnmcf* Frcf a- 
rations of the French fMr resuming Military Operations^ ' • • - 199 


Progrem of the War. Buonaparte takes the Command of the French i^ifi. Bat* 
tie of tutxen. Battle of Bautien, and Retreat of the Allies. The combined A^ * 
mies retire* and Buonaparte enters Dresden, - • - 216 


Policy of Sweden. Dissensions betwixt that Power and France. The Swedish Go* 
iremmeot abandons the Continental System, and joins the Alliance of the European 
Powers, s**-f33 


An Armlstlee conduded by the Tnterrention of Austria. Proposals for a Congress* 
The Armistice denounced, and Austria joins the Allies. Movements of the Armies. 
Snccem of Blucher and of the Crown Prince. Repulse of an Attack on Dresden, 243 

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of ihe Allied Anaiefe Deeteive Battle of Ulpzig, and Rout of 
Ike Fwtmcbm Their Flight to the Rhiae. Tlie Combined Armies pan the Fiencli 
fmAer, 267 

AMfarHaUaad. Cmcs 

aadProgremoftheReTolatlao. RaitoimtiooortliePriBce 

IcfedlaM OB tkelBtrodocUon of Trial by Jary, la CiTilCameiyiato Scotland, - 30t 

CaaoviciA, MimlniBg Mef Accoaott of tbe larioai Pnblic Oecarrencct of tbe 

Tear. - --•--. i— cWIII 

Arraiioix I^*Gaaeltc^ - - • • • •» clzil 

11. ftiaW P^pcfi^ ^ - - . - • ccxaxi 

PwBuc Ac coo a n of Grait Britain and Irdaad, - - • ccczr 

UtofPafoHSy ...•• • .• cccxzxl 

Italfft of (be Emperor Kea King, received at Cantoa, Nov* 8, 1813, • cccxxzli 


TW Paacf o^ Death, by Walter Scott, E<q> • • • . cecisxv 

Jbrnaace of Daoeii, • * ccczzxiz 

tag, far the A a o l ieii aiy Meeting of tbe Pitt Clnb of Scotland, . • ccczl 

Tbe Ettriehe Garland ; being two excellent new Songi on tbe Lifting of tbe 
fimmec of tbe Ho«m of Bocclench, at a great Foot-ball Match on Carterhaogb, cccz 11 

Bdeaif KirfccooneU, cccxlill 

I of tiotace—^Sd Ode, by Allan Ramsay, Junior, • • ccczlv 

m,- -•---•-- ccczlvi 

ttooLadycsiessfa^aalofhnt, . . • . « ccczlvii 

TWUadosiGesefml BUI of Mortality, . . ... ecczlix 

Ij* of Birt^Marriafc^, and Deathly • . • . ccci 

imrfPro m otloBs • « • . . • . ccclzl 

keoPMkatuNmlbrlSlS, •! 

Ilia, -- •---•• ojtxv 


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^ U Oomlai the opening qfthe Nem ParUameni, November 2i» 1811 


Earl of Harrowbj Lord President of the Council. 

Lord Eldon ..•••,•• Lord High Chancellor. 

Earl of Westmoreland . . • • . Lord Privy Seal. 

-P. J «f T ;„-«^^l . f First Lord of the Treasury (Prime 

Earl of Liverpool . • . . . .| Minister). 

1*. 1^ XT VT« L 1 \r •^-. —. 'Chancellor and Under-Treasurer of 

Right Hon. Nicholas Vanwttart • . | ^j^^ Exchequer. 

Lord Viscount Melville .... First Lord of the Adniiralty. 
Earl Mulgrave Master- General of the Ordnance. 

Loni Vwcount Sidmouth .... jSecretary of State for the Home De- 

^ partment. 

Lord Viacount C«.tle«.gh . . |^*^S!'^ °^ ^''*" ^°' ^''"'^ ^^" 
T J "D -.V -. I Secretary of State for the Department 

E«^Bathunt ] of w7r and the Colonic,. ^ 

T? 1 f i> !_• 1. I.- . 1 President of the Board of Controul 

EarlofBuck»gh«m.hire . . . .| for the Affairs gf India. 

•Right Hon. Ch.rle.B.thur.t . .-f^"*"" "^ '^ ^"^^''^ °^ ^^- 
^ ^ caster. 

Right Hon. George Rose • • • . Treasurer of the Navy. 

Earl of Clancarty President of the Board of Trade. 

Right Hon. F. J. Rohinson . . . Vice-President of the Board of Tt^de, 
Right Hon. Charles Long • • .1 Joint Paymaster -General of the 
Lord Charles Somerset ... .J Forces. 

l^uffa^r ; : : : : :} Joint Post^-ter-Cenend. 

Viscount PalmerstOD Secretary at War. 

Right Hon. Charles Arbuthnot . .1 o^,^.-^^ ^c .i,^ T'«»««««r 
RiAard Wharton, Esq j Secretaries of the Treasury. 

Sir William Grant ...... Master of the Rolls. 

Sir Thomas Plumer .•...'• Attomey-General. 
Sir William Garrow ..... Solicitor-GeneraL 


Duke of Richmond ..•..• I^rd Lieutenant. 

Lord Manners Lord High Chancellor. 

Right Hon. Robert Pcd .... Chief Secrctarv. 

Right Hon. W. Fitzgerald ... Chancellor of the Excbcquert 

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For 1813. 


>Joefimg of TmHiamenU — Prince Regent*s Speech on opening the SASSfbm— 
JX^Aafiv ^m ike Addrest.'^Sir Francis Aurdett^s Motion concerning the 

Thk jiew parliament met oa the 24th 
of Ncr««iibcr, 1812. After the usual 
Jiamialitjes bad been gone through, 
tbc Priacc Regent, on the 80th of 
t^ sasne uaootji, pronounced from the 
ikrooe a speech which embraced a 
cocaprebensive view of the great events 
of the year. 

His royal highness stated, that he 
bad been induced to take the earliest 
opportnoHy of meeting his parlia- 
■esi after the late elections ; and he 
was persuaded they would cordiall7 
pnticipate in the satisfaction, which 
£e derrred from the improTement of 
the state of public affairs during the 
OMne of the year. That the Valour 
diiay cd by fais majesty's forces, and 
rhoac of his allies^ in the peninsula, on 
so maay' occasions during the last 
eaaipain, and the consummate skill 
▼idi vlicb the operations had been 

conducted by general the Marquis of 
Wellington, had led to consequences 
of the utmost importance to the com- 
mon cause. By transferring the war 
into the interior of Spain, and by the 
glorious and ever-memorable victory 
obtained at Salamanca, be had com- 
pelled the enemy to raise the siege of 
Cadiz ; and the southern provinces of 
the kingdom bad been thus delivered 
from the armies of France* Although . 
his royal highness could not but re- 
gret that the efforts of the French, 
combined with a view to one great 
operation, had rendered it necessary 
to withdraw from the siege of Bur- 
gos, and to evacuate Madrid* for thie 
purpose of concentrating the ipain 
body of the allied forces ; these efforts 
of the enemy had however been at- 
tended with important sacrifices on 
his part, which mus( materially con* 

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tribute to extend the resources and fa- 
cilitate the exertions of the Spanish 
nation. His royal highness expressed 
his firm reliance on the determination 
of parliament to continue every aid in 
support of a contest which had first 
given to the continent of Europe, the 
example of persevering and successful 
resistance to the power of France, and 
on which not only the liberties of the 
nations of the peninsula, but the best 
interests of his majesty's dominions es- 
sentially depended. 

The restoration of peace betwixt 
his majesty and the courts of St Pe- 
tersburffh and Stockholm was an- 
nounced, and copies of the treaties were 
laid before parliament. The exertions 
of the Russian empire were; highly ap- 
plauded. By the magnanimity of its 
emperor, bv the zeal and disinterest- 
edness of all ranks of his subjects, by 
the firmness and intrepidity of his 
forces, the presumptuous expectations 
of the enemy had been signally disap* 
pointed. Tne enthusiasm of tne Rus- 
sian^ people had increased with the dif- 
ficulties of the contest, and the dan- 
gers with which they were surround- 
ed. They had submitted to sacrifices 
of which there are few examples in the 
history of the world. — A confident 
hope was expressed by his royal high- 
ness, that the determined perseverance 
of his imperial majesty would be 
crowned with ultimate success; and 
that this contest, in its result, would 
have the effect of establishing, upon a 
foundation never to be shaken, the se- 
curity and independence of the Rus- 
sian empire. The proof of confidence 
which his royal highness had received 
' Irom his imperial majesty, who had re- 
cently sent his fleets to the ports of 
this country, was in the highest degree 
gratifying ; and it was added, that his 
imperial majesty might rely on the 
fixed determination of his royal high- 
ness to afford him the most cordial 

support in the great contest in which 
he was engaged. 

The conclusion of a supplementary 
treaty with the regency of Sidly, the 
object of which was to provide for the 
more extensive application of the mili- 
tary force of the Sicilian government 
10 offensive operations^ was also an- 
nounced ; this measure, combined with 
the liberal principles now happily pre- 
vailidg in tne councils of his Sicuian 
majesty, was calculated to augment 
his power and resources, and, at the 
same time, to render them essentially 
serviceable to the common cause. 

The declaration of war by the go* 
▼emment of the United States of Ame- 
rica, was said, in the speech^ to have 
been made under circumstances which 
might have afforded a reasonable ex- 
pectation, that the amicable relations 
betwixt the two nations would not lon^ 
be interrupted ; but the conduct ana 
pretensions of the American ffovem- 
ment had hitherto prevented tne con- 
clusion of any pacific arrangement. The 
measures of hostility, on thepart of A- 
merica, had been principals directed 
against the adjoining Bntish pro- 
vinces, and every effort had been made 
to s^uce the inhabitants of them 
from their allegiance to his majesty. 
The proofs, however, of loyalty and 
attachment received from his majesty' ( 
subjects in North America, were high< 
ly satisfactory. The attempts of th< 
enemy to invade Upper Canada, hac 
not only proved abortive, but, by th< 
judicious arrangements of the gorem 
or-general, and by the skill and deci 
sion with which the military operation 
had been conducted, the forces of th 
enemy assembled for that purpose i 
one quarter, had been compelled t 
capitulate, and in another had bee 
completely defeated. The best cffon 
of his rojal highness should not 1 
wanting ror restoring the relations < 
peace and amity between the t v: 

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CflAP. i.;i 


tomtaa ; bot ontil tbie objeet could 
be stuioedy without sacrindiijj^ the 
avkiBe i^its of Great Britain, he 
refed upon the cordial support of 
jMittamptrf ill a vigorous proaecutios 
qC tbe war. — ^The prince concluded 
by tfitE^y that the approaching ex* 
* I of the charter of the East In* 

dk coDpanyy rendered it necessary 
tktt the early attention of parliament 
ihoidd be called to the propriety of 
p ff O fk liu g for the future government 
of the hidiaa proTinces of the Bri* 

A ^ery wide field of discussion was 
cstoed into by the members of both 
booses of pauiiament, when the ad« 
dress was mo^rad ; and a comprehen- 
Bfe sorrey was taken of the state of 
priific anirt. Athougb men of all 
panies app rofcd of the general spirit 
wbidb. pervaded the ad£*ess (which 
waa of ccwrte an cdio of the speech,) 
the jUkgcd practical errors ot admi- 
aiitratian were the subject of severe 
ceatore^— It was adnutted, indeed, 
that the address would have been 
matt nnaatiafactoryt had it» with re- 
ipcct to the great contest in the pe- 
"•■^^g or the cause in which the 
Eaiperor €d Russia was engraged, as* 
assied in any degree a lower tone 
th«i that wmch pervaded it. ** No- 
thiag lessy it was observed, was .de* 
mumtd by the interests of the coun- 
try, by a proper zeal for our own ho- 
■OBTy or by a true regard to the wel- 
£ae of oar allies, embarked in the 
cause with ourselves. The 
from the throne anticipated 
. firmness, and prudence, from 
on the present trying oc- 
sn the eyes of Europe, nay, 
«E the world, were fixed upon us. 
Thnc was pothing novel in this la9- 
pagtxo be sure, but there was the 
BHiac ipfendtd novelty in the circum- 
Mo which it was applied. Par& 
would exercise tat sane wis- 
ioB, it would evittce the same perse- 

verance, it would dispUy the same 
firmness, especially on the great ques- 
tion of the war in the peninsula, as it 
had hitherto shewn. That country, 
it was remarked, at this moment natu.> 
rally excited the most lively int^rest-^ 
for great as the triumphs achieved 
there had been, they were not unche* 
quered by misfortune. But, as it was 
certainly the highest mark of wisdom 
to persevere, with reasonable grounds 
of hope, in the face of danger and 
difBiciuty, so it was the high^t cluu 
racter of firmness to meet the tide of 
success without intoxication, to .ana- 
lyze the grounds upon which it de- 
pended, and from that analysis, car^ 
fully and cautiously pursued^ to de<- 
duce one general and consistent gro^]^ 
of public action. Even if our success 
had been general and unquali^ed, a 
wise man would say to those who re- 
presented an enlightened nation, to 
those who were prepared and anxious 
to do their duty— be not led away by 
this success— be not intoxicated with 
it — let not its lustre so dazzle your fa- 
culties, that you perceive neither 
whence it originated, how it nuiy b^ 
rendered permanent, nor to what ultir 
mate objects it may be applkd* We 
"had, indeed, done much in Spain | but;, 
what still remained to be done ? And 
that question naturally led to a review 
of the events which had taken plac^ 
there, since the time when Lord Wel- 
lington was before Badajoz. From 
.the very commencement of the strug- 
gle in the peninsula, the only solid 
ground of success, the only practical 
.system of resistance which could be 
aaopted, was to awaken in the people 
of Spain a spirit of hostility to F^anc^, 
and to succour and aid that hostility 
upon a broad and extensive scale c^ 
operations. With our force and re- 
sources propeHy directed in tliat way^ 
great advantages might be expected, 
and final triumph be ensured. It wa^, 
indeed* very dear^ that the filler of 

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France never would desist from hii 
object, till some oTerwfaelmine force 
should interrupt the career of his am- 
bitioii* If the Spanish people could 
once bring themselyes to teel that there 
was no evil to be put in competition 
for a moment with that of submission 
to the government of France; that 
loss of property^, loss of relations, loss 
of all that was dear to them, loss of 
life itself, was small and insiflrnificant, 
compared to that tremendous and 
overwhelming calamity— submission 
to France ; if they could be brought 
to this pitch of patriotism and resist- 
ance, every thing might then be hoped 
from the contest. Our efforts co-ope- 
rating with this general feeling, might 
have been productive of the greatest 
benefits. The person who now ruled 
over the destinies of France would, 
were such a system pursued,^ either 
find himself, by the success of our 
arms, reduced to the necessity of a- 
bandoning the cause; or his ambi- 
tion, leading him to exert all his means 
and energies in this one quarter, would 
rouse his secret enemies in other parts 
of Evfope, who would seize the op- 
portunity of his reverses in Spain, to 
shake off his yoke. He would then 
be compelled to divide his forces ; and 
a prospect of more easy success to our 
efforts in the peninsula would be open- 
ed.-^SUch it was said was the view 
■which ought to be taken of the con- 
test in Spain, and with regard to the 
spirit of universal hostility in the Spa- 
nish people, which was so essential to 
success, that had been produced in its 
fullest force in the course of last year. 
The success of the British arms in 
Spain had moreover been feh and con- 
sidered in Russia as the salvation of 
that country ; had it not been for our 
triumphs in the peninsula, the leader 
of France would have been able to di- 
rect a military force against Russia, 
so -vast and overwhelming as to pre- 
clude the hope of successful reaisl- 

ance. But was not all this foreseen 
and was not thii the very basis oi 
which the system to be pursued in ou 
pre sent situation should be founded 
What then followed from this view o 
the subject? The moment it wa 
known thgt such efforts were making 
in Russia, the moment it was know: 
that resistance was commencing o 
the one side, ought we not to hav 
made every effort on the other,— 
ought we not to have strained all th 
resources of the country to' their vcr 
utmost ; and if we were honest in ou 
professions respecting the commc 
cause, ought we not to have seize 
the momentous crisis which had oc 
curred, to strike one grand and deci 
sive blow ? 

" It became a great question there 
fore, whether the system of polic 
which had hitherto been pursued wa 
founded upon just and extended prir 
ciples ; whether an able and efficier 
direction of our resources had bee 
made ; whether such means as th 
country possessed had been fully cnr 
pbyed ; and whether upon the whoh 
the result had been such as the natio 
had a right to expect, from the poj 
session of those means, and the jus 
application of them.— The true an 
legitimate object of the contest wa: 
the expulsion of the French armic 
from Spain : this was the plain an 
practical view of the matter ; it wa 
intelligible to all ; and it became n< 
cessary to enquire what had been don 
in the course of the year toward 
its accomplishment; compared wit 
what might have been done if our n 
sources had been properly, wisely, an 
efficiently employed Now the war i 
the peninsula had been carried on in 
way totaDy inadequate to the accono 
plishment of the only practical objec 
of the contest. Let us look back t 
the period of the reduction of Bada 
joz — the beginning of April last. A 
that .time the great general who. com 

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nwkdoarinniet in Spain having re- 
ined thit important fortress, hit next 
ftn, it was natural to tappoie» etpe- 
daflyat tkat tesson of the year, would 
be to eipdthe French from the south 
oC Spsb But why did he not do so ? 
BeCMK his means were deficient ; be- 
casie he was under the necessity of 
a&adoiiBg his object— that of march- 
ii^sganit Soult^ and raism^ the siege 
ofCadix, Ins reaoarces beug ioa£- 
qoate ; sad he was under the necessity 
« omchnig northward with his army» 
bccaaie in the noi^ of Spain there 
TO BO fefoe which he could leave suf- 
kicnt to check the progress of Mar- 
anat. To the north he accordingly 
did pneeedy and there he was» from 
the opefation of the same causes^ com- 
pdled to remasa on the frontiers of 
Span till the ISth of June, and hv 
that tnaeMsnuont's army was in sucn 
astafee, from the accession of reinforce- 
mattf that it became doubtful whe- 
ther the British coomander could safe- 
I7 adraace. But ivhy did he remain 
■sctiie 80 bng ? Because his means 
of advaadng were insufficient ; because 
Wvaated money » and supplies of erery 
ioit} because he bad not the common 
■csai of transport to convey his artil- 
i»y. At last, however. Lord Wei- 
^[Uhi advanced without a battering 
^^ aet because he thought it unne- 
<ffi»j br the success of his military 
^postioBs, but because he literally had 
Bottheoieanaof tran^rtingit. Af- 
ter LordWeQiogton did advance^ what 
«ss his real situation? He had advan- 
ced because he expected powerful co- 
•pwtion on the other side of the pe- 
^^nia, agreeably to the plan concert- 
^vith hun eveawhen he was before 
Wsjos. He must have expected the 
l^i^aoe of this force, therefore, a^ 
^ time of his advance into Spain ; 
"r>had he not so expected It, his ad- 
]^ into that country would have ^ 
ben ni^ostifiable, even though success 
lad ultimately iti»ided his progrtsa. 

It was certain, howevert that he re« 
mained a considerable time 00 the fron- 
tier, waiting for intdligence of the ar« 
rivd of this co-operating force, but 
waiting in vain ; he then advanced, 
still confident in his hope that it would 
arrive in time to make a strong diver- 
sion in his favour. But he. soon disco- 
vered (as every one knew) the army of 
Marmont to be much more numerons 
than he had expected. Nor was that all 
he found i he learned that Suchet had 
detached a corps to unite with Joseph^a 
army, which made his force efficient 
to co-operate ydth the army under 
Marmont. What was the coi^si^uence? 
On the 17th of July» five days before 
the battle of Salainanca, Lord Wel- 
lington commanded, not a feigned, but 
a real retreat ; and this retreat he con- 
tinued during the 16th, 19th, 80th, 
2l8t, and till late in the day of the 
2i5d. But why did be retreat ? Why 
did this great general retreat ? Because 
his means were if\adequate. He had 
no money ; he had not even 20,000 
dollars in his military chest. Th» 
richest brigade in the army did not 
possess more than dOOO dollars ; and 
what were the means left to this de^ 
serted general to recruit his finances i 
Forty thousand dollars had been sent 
to Cadiz for the use of the Spaniards i 
these he was forced to intercept, and 
apply to the exi^ncies of the British 
army. Upon a fair comparison of hia 
force with that of Marmont, and ta- 
king into calculation the remforce- 
ments so btely received by Joseph's 
army from Marshal Suchet, which tbe 
latter would have been unable to spare 
if the Sicilian expedition had arrived 
in due time on the eastern coast of 
Spain, Lord Wdlington deemed it 
most prudent to retreat* Here was a 
proof that hii means were inade<)uaie } 
and this deficiency of force arose chief* 
ly, if not entirely) from the tardj and 
ineffectual co-operation of the Sicilian 

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<^ The next step 10 tracing the pro- 
gress of Lord Wellineton fed to a 
period full of glory and renown— the 
h^tde of Salamanca. Bvt from what 
.circumstances did that battle arise i 
Did it arise ont of his efficiencjry or out 
of his necessity ? it arose mm the 
noagnificencey the splendour, the mat- 
ness of his talents. He struck the 
enemy with his spear the moment he 
•aw an opening. But was the unex- 
pected coinctdCTce, out of which such 
great events arose» a solid ground to 
build a system of policy upon ? Lord 
Wellington V talents, ind«dj were a 
firm and secure rock» on which any 
hopes, anyexpecutions, however great, 
however exalted, might be founded ; 
but it 31 became statesmen to calculate 
mon chances and occasions presenting 
themselves for success in operations, 
upon the prosperous issue of which so 
much depended. Did ^e ministers 
mean to say, that their system was 
raised solely upon the matchless abili- 
ties of their general, and upon the er- 
rors of the enemy ? Did they mean to 
affirm, that all their plans amounted 
jonly to this ? The battle of Salaman- 
ca was certainly productive of great 
events ; the evacuation of the south of 
Spain ; the raising of the siege of Ca- 
diz, and the occupation of Madrid by 
our troops. But did it secure these 
Advantages ? Were they permanent ? 
Was Lord Wellington able to pursue 
Marmont ? No. He was not able to 
^ that, which so obviously he ought 
to have done, because Joseph's army, 
mnfbroed by the corps from Suchet, 
vas banging on his flank, and after- 
^wds on his rear. It was necessary 
to disperse that army. He did so, 
and entered Madrid. Could he then 
march southward to pursue the career 
of his conquests > No. He found that 
the corps whttih he had so lately de- 
feated) the ztn^over which he had so 
recently triumphed, was strong again, 
and he was compelled to-4tnM:t bis 

course to the north o^ee aM>i%, to men 
them. Then followed the siege q 
Burgos ; and so £ar from oonatderinj 
as a disappointment the failure of Lon 
Wellington in his attempt to reduc 
that fortress, madness alone could hav 
supposed that a fortress of such a de 
scrij^on dionld be reduced by a* fin 
guns. Lord Wellington's means wer 
confessedly inadeouate to the object 
according to all toe established ruLo 
of vrar. 

<< Again, when it vras understood 
so far back as the month of June laat 
that Lord WeUington was advancin| 
into Spain, could ministers fail to dia 
cover, that France, being engaged h 
a war with Russia, must necessarily 
detach a great part of her force to thai 

Quarter of Europe ; and that now wmi 
ie moment, hot only in reference U 
that event, but also to the temper o 
the Spanish nation, to send ont suffi 
cient reinforcements to enable his lord 
ship to proceed upon a large and effec* 
tive scale of operations I Without sud 
reinforcements, it was manifestly im 
prudent to advance into Spain. Bui 
how was Lord Wellington iieinforced i 
On the 21st of October he thought il 
necessary to retire from Burgos f ox 
the 25th he saw the French army, and 
we knew from his dispatches it wac 
greatly superior to his own foroe, espe- 
cially in cavalry, an arm so important 
to military operations in that country. 
On the 25th of October, therefoi^, 
that army which Lord WeUinff ton had 
conqnercKl on the plains of Salamanoa, 
«— that army which he had driven be« 
fore him on that itiemoraUe day, with 
a ^rrandeur of military achievement 
^hich the language of htstonr or po- 
etry could never equal, ana whid^ 
ranked him among the most renowned 
generals of this or any other ^e,^-~ 
that army had received strong and effi- 
cient reinforoemciits since the battle of 
Salamanca, and was now enabled U^ 
turn upon its pursuers*. Where were 

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Lorf WrlBngf on% fma£otetmtBU du- 
iBgtlie •me period? Scattered ereiy 
in port at homef toooe 
aatkeocc»» and aooie kndedat too 
to be of any use. 
taelt reached him on 
^Mch^ Ibvr daja after he had begun 
baa ictieat. Wliere were the othen i 
Ok legi a rnt adtranoed as far at Benc- 
l aattj^ aad waa forced to retreat again 
to the fitoetiera. Two regiments were 
Inded at Coraiuia» and were repeal* 
barked fiv Liabooy where they ni|^ 
paobably arrive hi time to reach Lord 
WfWiagtBn at the conunencement of 
die aeat amapaign. 

'■Sachwaa t£e state of the war m 

dK iwaiiainlaj iiifh the n^uiner hi 

wfaam it had been conducted,— and it 

m^t beaakedy whether, if the same 

i had been made by the miai- 

i o£ tbaa eofvotry as were made by 

y» LdOtdtWdhngtoa m^ht 

been able to proaecute to 

- £bI1 esteat his operations against 

( i — Now for the Sicilian «ipe- 

it had been denominated. 

The plaa of that expedition had been 

c a a tMled with JLord Wellington when 

he avaa before Badajoz. In conse^ 

t of the in^proTed fortune of oar 

t ia Itaiy, it was thought that a 

fai^ ef our llnce might be spaved from 

dna ^juarter to co-operate with our 

amnes ia Spsoa $ and* if it had anired 

at tbe proper season on the south-east 

Qoaat of uiat country, at the period 

whcB Ixifd Wdlington fuHy expected 

iiy flodait would base beea utterly un- 

aUe to detach a corps to reinforoe 

Jaaeph, indeed, must 

i to assist Sudkot. Such 

a timely airital wonid have been of 

ami aerfiee ; but, like all the other 

parts of the systeai, it was iiaperfect 

\' at that noaoent when it was 

taqairBd to be perfect | soiat- 

idoae^botnotall; aadwbat 

saaastfaavfoveofuouse. The 

im diiishwi aniftd ia the coarse of 

June, but was so soiall that it could 
^ect aothaag« Suchct, meanwhilet 
wrote to Joseph, that he could not 
proceed with his whole corps, but that 
he seat him a reinforcement; which 
reinforcement, it afterwards appeared, 
had the effect of defeating every great 
object of the campaign* Suchet had 
nothing to apprehend from the SicUian 
expedition, ia the force to which, at 
that period, it aBM>unted. Some time 
afterwards, however,— -about the end 
of July--4u-rived the remidnder. Thcjr 
appeared on the coast of Cataloeia, 
and all they accomplished was to ex* 
cite the Cataloaians to a demonstra- 
tion of attachment to the British and 
Spanish cause, which led, in the resdty 
to dreadful executiona among them* 
The result had bft also» on the minds 
of the Cataloaians, sentiments of susfu* 
don, alienation, and hatred, which it 
would be difficult to eradicale. It was 
thought advisable that this expedilioii 
slwula operate either at BaroeUma or 
Tarragona, or at some intermediate 

Soint ; but at last it arrived where no 
uman bemg could have anticipated its 
presence, Md then became utteily ex* 
tinct as to any efficient purpose in the 
prosecution of the war- . No adequate 
apology could be o&red for thn fatal 
indecision : at one time it was thou^pht 
this place would be the best at which 
to disembark ; and then another was 
auggeeted, till at last the very worst 
place of aU was adopted. If it was the 
greatest trial of a powerful mind to 
decide among great difficulties, it waa 
the test of a vreak mind to be placed 
between two advantms, and not know 
which to choose. The singular fea- 
ture of the present case, however^ was* 
that both the advaatagea were lottt 
and only this disadvantage gaitted,-«» 
duM^ a warhke province of ^am had 
baen alienated tram the Spanish cause 
by the indecision of the alliee. And 
what had been the vesult of all those 
procetdinga ? It had been said in the 

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ppeech from the throne^ indeedf that 
the result was nothing more than the 
concentration of the ^nch armies, as 
if Lord Wellington's retreat had been 
merely a military manoeuvre ; after 
which followed the monstrous propo- 
•ftion, that such events were ravour 
able to the interests and resources of 
the Spanish nation. Some explana- 
tion should be given of that assertioir ; 
for it was most injurious both to this 
.country and to Spain. Had the south 
of Spain been dehvered ? Did the mi 
Ulster mean to say, that, in point of 
£ict9 the south of Spain was not now 
under the dominion of France ? 

« In moving from Burgos* Lord 
.Wellington found himself pursued by 
a force much superior to that under 
his command ; and such being the end 
of the campaign, what real progress 
had been made towards the great ob- 
ject of the contest ? — ^With regard to 
the object of the war in Spain, three 
schemes had been successively Revised ; 
two were merely talked of, and the 
third was practised* The first was 
founded on an idea that it would be 
imprudent to embark as a principal in 
the contest, unless some other power, 
by its co-operation, prevented the force 
of France from being concentrated to- 
wards that one point— -the subjugation 
of Spain. From such a scheme of po- 
£cy this inference was deducible, that 
our resources were considered by those 
who maintained the opinion to be in- 
sufficient to carry on the war as prin- 
cipals upon an adequate scale» and that 
we must therefore wait a more favour- 
able opportunity* The second plan 
prooeededon the principle that it would 
be prudent and higUhr expedient to 
make exertions upon a large scale, ade- 
quate to the destruction of the French 
power in Spain. Both these plans 
were different in their priaciple» and 
yet each was consistent upon its own 
principle. If our resources were really 
inadequate^ then the first plan was very 

just and proper ; but if they were ad^ 
quate to extensive operations, then th 
second plan was obviously the fitted 
to be adopted. But the plan whid 
all mankind must reprobate, was thi 
of employing our resources, so as t 
expose the sinews of our strength t 
hourly danger ; bearing hard upon ou 
finances, yet accomplishing no gres 
object. Such a plan as this every on 
must concur in condemning. It wa 
essentially hostile to the pnnciples c 
economy ; it was expence without ad 
vantage ; and yet that was the systei 
which had been pursued during th 
late campaign. A vast expence o 
blood and treasure had been lavisheci 
and our resources enfeebled, withou 
accomplishing any one definite or pre 
cise object. When France was aiedi 
tating fresh wars in the north of £u 
rope, and when we saw Russia pre 
pared to resist her ambitious design 
to the last extremity, what more vi 
gorous or effectual assistance could w\ 
have given to Russia, than by prose 
cuting the war in Spain ? The bes 
succour we could give to that coun 
try,' the most essential aid we couli 
bntow, was by carrying on the wa 
in the peninsula upon a broad and ex 
tensive scale of operations ; but it wai 
not so carried on, and our present sys 
tem,therefore, might almost be thooghj 
a defection from the cause of Russia 
The events of the last campaign ha^ 
indeed been beneficial to Spain f but 
those benefits were imperfectly seen- 
red, and could not be expeeted to bt 
permanent '' 

The speakers on the side of opposl 
tion then passed to the affsirs of the 
north, and alladed to the hopes heU 
out of a diversion from Sweden in fa- 
vour of the operations of Russia. No- 
thing could be moreerrooeoQs in poli- 
cy, Uiey nEuuntaioedt than the lins oi 
conduct pursued with regard to Sweden. 
** A more extraordinary actof dijdoina- 
cy had never occurred than the treaty 

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CllAF. 1-1 



vttch miaisters had concluded with 
tbe Swednh government. It was a 
titaty which promised every advan- 
tage to Sweden, without guaranteeing 
asy to England. It was, in fact, a 
treaty in which, as it had been once 
wldmskafly observed upon a similar 
coBtnct, the reciprocity was all on one 
fidb; for we had engaged to afford 
Swedea a& the assistance in our power, 
is her operations against the enemy, 
or for her o^ra protection, while no- 
thing appeared likely to be done for 
Bi, ur for our allies, on her part. An 
cxpe<Htion was indeed projected, and 
eipected to sail from Sweden, to co- 
opertte with Russia ; but that object 
was seon abandoned ; no expedition 
ever did sail ; and in consequence of 
that abandonrnent. General Victor, 
who, with his force, waited in Swedish 
Pomerama to meet the apprehended 
divernon, vras enabled to withdraw, 
and biB division actM^lly formed a part 
of the army with which Buonaparte 
made hn way to Moscow. Such were 
the important effects of the inactivity 
of Sweden ; and for that inactivity, so 
iBJarioos to the objects of the war, it 
was for ministers, in their diplomatic 
nao^ement with Sweden, to account* 
Thb account, indeed, they were bound, 
for their own justifioition, to produce. 
At a meeting which had taken place at 
Abo, about the end of July, between 
the Emperor Alexander, Lord Cath- 
cart, and the Crown Prince of Sweden, 
it was understood to have been arran- 
ged that the expedition already alluded 
ID dioold be dispatched from Sweden ; 
ad so cordially, it seemed, did mini- 
iters enter into the project ; so power- 
fii^ did they determine to forward its 
progress, with the view of impeding 
the French army, that transports for 
the cottveyance of the Swedish expe- 
ditioii were ordered to sail from Sheer- 
■ess oo the 19th September, and Buo- 
amrte entered Moscow on the 14th 
ot^the same month! So fared this 

grand and much-talked- of expedition. 
What sort of explanation ministers had 
it in their power to give upon this 
subject, it was difficult to conjecture ; 
but it appeared most extraordinary, 
that after the meeting and discussion 
iust mentioned, ministers should not 
nave been enabled to judge of the real 
disposition of the Crown Prince of 
Sweden, or that they should not have 
taken measures to ascertain whether 
any change had taken place in that 
disposition before the dispatch of the 
transports. With respect to Russia^ 
while all must concur m the panegyric 
pronounced upon the magnanimity dis- 
played bv that power, it might be 
aeked, what assistance had our mini- 
sters afforded to encourage the display, 
or to aid the operation, of that mag- 
nanimity ? This it was difficult to con- 
ceive, except sendinfi^ the Russians 
about 50,000/. together with Lordu 
Cathcart and Walpole, were to be 
wwed in this light. 

*• The war in the north of Europe 
was the child of that great effort in 
the peninsula, which had enabled Eu- 
rope to reflect on its condition, and 
roused it to struggle for emai^cipation. 
There can be but one feeling— that of 
unbounded admiration— *at the great 
efforts which Russia had made. No- 
ble indeed has been the struggle, and 
glorious beyond anticipation the re- 
sults in that quarter } there, even there, 
where the tyrant anticipated an easy 
victory, and concluded, from former 
experience, that one decisive battle 
would be the precursor of an abject 
peace,— there, where, thinking that he 
knew his man, and that he should 
have only one man to cope with and 
to cajole, he found, what he had for- 
gotten to take into his estimate, a 
nation ; where, imagining that, having 
issued a bulletin and taken a fort, his 
work was done, he unexpectedly found 
a countless population throng^ing to 
the standard of their sovereign, pre- 

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pared for exertions and for sacrifices 
such as the world has seldom* if ever, 
witnessed before ; and opposing, not 
merely with the. artns of a disciplined 
soldiery, not merely with the physical 
mass of impenetrable multitudes, but 
with famine and wfth fire, with the 
voluntary destruction of their own re- 
•ourcesi and with the conflag^ration of 
their own houses, the progress of his 
•desolating ambition. No man can con- 
template the recent occurrences in the 
«Ortn of Europe without feeling ex- 
ultation in his bosom* The invader 
of Russia flattered himself that a na- 
tion, to which he afiixed the appella- 
tion of barbarous, and which he pic- 
tured to himself as in a condition of 
degrading and disheartening servitude, 
conld entertain no generous and patri- 
otic Mntiment. lie had yet to team, 
that there is a principle of instinctive 
patriotisnn, which prevails even over 
the vice of positive institutions ; he 
had to learn, that in spite of the doc- 
trines, and, it may be added, of too 
many of the events of the last twenty 
Tears, it is not an universal truth, that 
before the people of any country de- 
termine to resist an invader, they cold- 
ly speculate on aU the possible im- 
provements to be made by regenera- 
ting laws in the actual condition of 
their society, that they refuse to draw 
a sword in defence ol their altars or 
their fire-8i4e6, until they have weigh- 
ed well the question, whether they be 
worth defending, and entered at full 
leisure and with all imaginable research 
into a comparative anatomy of various 
political constitutions. The invader 
of Russia has found that the natural 
feelings of man, the sacred attachment 
to home, the ties of custom, of family, 
of kindred, are enough to arouse re- 
sistance to a foreign invader, come 
though he may with splendid promises 
of fmdom and improvement ; that he 
may be resisted, and gallantly and ef- 
^tually resistedi by those whom he 

proposed to regenerate, not merely 
because it may be apprehended that 
he might not realize those promises^ 
but simply because he is a foreigner 
and an invader. If this were to be the 
sole result of what had taken place id 
the north, it would be aa invaluable 
addition to, or rather it would be a 
timely and salutary revival of, those 
ancient maxims of national independ- 
ence, which the convulsions of the 
modem world have almost buried in 
oblivion. But is this all? Can any 
aian who looks at the present condi- 
tion of Buonaparte, witn what ability 
soever he ma^ have rescued himseu' 
from former difficulties, so chastise his 
feelings as not to entertain a sanguine 
hope of events most decidedly favour- 
abk to the general cause of Europe ^' 
With reference to the war with 
America, it was generally agreed << that 
a more iniouitous attack never waa 
made upon the peace of anv nation than 
that made by the AmerKan govern^ 
ment upon this country, nor could any 
cause be figured of which the justice 
was more apparent, than that which 
this country had to oppose to America* 
But the passage in the speech from 
the throne, which sanctioned the 0|m- 
nion that ministers still hoped for paci- 
fication with America, in consequence 
of something done previously to the 
declaration of war, created much sur- 
prise. Nothing, it was said, appeared 
more preposterous than the hope that 
the repeal of the orders in councii 
would serve to pacify America ; for 
these orders were never, in hctt the 
point at issue. The dispute with Ame- 
rica did not turn upon the orders in 
council, but referred to higher ques- 
tions, to topics deeply affecting our 
great maritime rights,— to points, in- 
deed, of such importance, that the 
British government could not accede 
to the pretensions of America withsut 
throwing into her hands the trident of 
the main. It would not avail mini- 

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Cbap. 1.] 



ten to repeat the assertions of those 
mho e xp re sse d 9uch saDgdne opinions 
s to tile probable result of the repeal 
of the orders in eoimcil. They aban- 
dooed ihcir ovm opinion upon that 
qoesdost and adopted that of their 
adrcrsviesy which no doubt furnished 
a Strang proof of their vigour, firm- 
ness and perseTerancre. Tney ought, 
m fact, to have expected, and been 
fuBy prepaied for war with America ; 
tkey oaghty as statesmen, to have 
laown cnat the American j^ovemment 
had been long infected with a deadly 
batred towards this country. It was 
absord to suppose that governments 
Jii%ht not, as well as individuals, be 
io&enced by passion ; or that they 
weie not n^ore apt to act from the 
impulse of their own vices or corrup- 
tkms, than from a consideration of the 
interest o5 those over whom they pre- 
tiide. l^o statesman would therefore 
condnde, that because it was contrary 
to tlie iaterest of the American people 
to engage in war with this country, 
the American government would shrink 
* lirom soch a measure. In this instance, 
mdeedy no such conclusion could be 
deemed in the slightest degree eiccusa- 
Ue, for the disposition of the Ameri- 
caa government was quite evident, and 
therefore common policy might have 
vrgcd ministers to prepare fully for the 
event ; they ought to have made ade- 
quate exertion to pacify, intimidate, or 
to pmii^ America* No means should 
kave been unprovided to repel the au- 
daciotts attack which the American 
government had ventured to make up- 
on Great Britain* — Nothing of this 
kmd, however, had been done, and 
had been suffered to com- 
aad, for a time, to carry on 
hostifities, even without danger to her- 
adf. The most extensive exertions 
ahoold be made to convince the Ame- 
ricas government of its folly ; and the 
best hope of peace would rest upon 
the maid J ana vigorous employment 

of our resources to make our eaemiet 
fed the Consequences of war.** 

The only remaining topic in the 
speech, was that which related to India* 
The affairs of our Indian empire, it was 
said, should be full^ investigated be* 
fore any system for its future govern- 
ment was finally determined upon. The 
whole question should be brought for- 
ward, not in the shape of a bin for le- 
gislation, as viras proposed last session, 
but in a distinct and separate form for 
ddiberate enquiry, in order that it 
might be examined in all its details. 

The omission to notice the catholie 
question in the speech from the throne, 
was severely censured. <« After all 
that had occurred in discussion,'' said 
some members of opposition, ** and 
been excited in hope, no disposition 
whatever was expressed to conciliate 
the catholics, or to adjust their claims. 
Every one remembered what had ta- 
ken place at the close of last session in 
both houses of pariiament; by the 
House of Commons, indeed, a distinct 
pledge had been entered into, fully to 
consider the catholic question, with a 
view to an ultimate and satisfactory 
arrangement. Was it now resolved to 
relinquish this pledge, and set aside all 
that had been done i There were too 
many grounds of suspicion upon this 
subject ; and several proceedmgs had 
occurred both in this country and in 
Ireland, where, to use the words of 
Lord Camden, ** the hand and fingers 
of government were very visibw.** 
Such, indeed, was thie supposed hosti- 
lity of government to the cause of the 
catholics, that one motive for the dis- 
solution of parliament was said to be 
a desire to get rid of the pledge of the 
other house upon the subject $ and if 
the rumours now abroad vrere well 
founded, that statement would appear 
not improbable. For, according to 
one rumour, it was the intention of 
ministers, after the Houses had met 
for a few days, and adjusted some 

Digitized by 




ntiters inunediatelf necessary to the 
objects of government, to propose an 
adjournment for two months. Now, 
the practical effect of such an ad- 
journment would be to evade the 
pledge for taking the catholic ques- 
tion into early consideration, which, 
combined with the omisuion in the 
speech, was a bad omen for the catho- 
lics—There were some words at the 
conclusion of the speech in praise of 
the constitution. Yet there was also 
^ report that ministers had it in con- 
templation to propose an extension of 
the duration of parliament upon the 
demise of the crown ; but the praise 
of the constitution contained in the 
speech, surely destroyed all belief in 
the rumour/* 

Such was the view taken by oppo- 
sition of the general policy of govern* 
ment. The ministers, on the other 
hand, vindicated their conduct from the 
imputations which were cast upon it, 
and expressed ** their readiness to sub- 
mit the whole of their proceedings to 
the strictest scrutiny, whether refer- 
ring to disaster or to triumph— whe- 
ther furnishing matter for congratida- 
tion, or connected with events which 
every one must deplore. With respect 
to^the conduct of the war, history ena- 
bled every one to pronounce that those 
who looked for unmixed success and 
exemption from every species of mis 
fortune, rested on hopes the most chi- 
merical. But where misfortune oc- 
curred, the majority of parliament and 
p( the public were too considerate and 
just, not to distmguish between chat 
^hich was attributable to the contin- 
gencies of war, and that for which mi- 
nisters or their agents might be deem^ 
ed fairly responsible.— The war in 
Spain might be regarded as a new era 
Jn the history of modem wars, because 
here the people were active in re- 
pelling their invaders. Unlike the 
people of Germany and Italy, who 
were passive spectators of the conflict 

produced by French invasion, the 
Spaniards were most forward to con- 
tend for the independence and for the 
old establishments of their country, 
and therefore then- cause held out an 
encouraging prospect, and a good 
example, which the people of Russia 
were now so nobly emuutinflr. It was 
this exhibition of a high national spi- 
rit which originally induced ministers 
to become the advocates of that assist- 
ance which the Spaniards had received 
from this country. Indeed, if this 
country had not afforded that aid, it 
would have betrayed an indifference, 
not only to every high sentiment of 
liberty, but even to the most common 
notions of policy. But while our ob- 
ject was to assist Spain,— to afford to 
the Spanish people and to Europe the 
means of profiting by circumstances 
which appeared so promising, mini- 
sters were certainly not so sanguine, 
as many others who concurred with 
them, in the policy of granting assist- 
ance. Whatever the resuk might be, 
it was the duty of England to make 
an attempt in favour of Spain, ' The 
real question therefore was, whether 
the exertions of Britain were com- 
mensurate with her means and re-* 
sources, as well as with the import- 
ance of the object, the attainment of 
which was in view ? This was the true 
question. With regard then to the 
amount of the aid afiorded, the utmost 
had been done for Spain, which, con- 
sistently with a due attention to other 
objects, it was possible for govern- 
ment to accomplish. It was for those 
who maintained the contrary to shew 
how and where more might nave been 
done. A 8 to the adequacy of the 
means to the end in view, it was pro- 
per to remark, that our great com- 
pander in the peninsula had never been 
deceived by government with respect 
to the means in its power to afford, 
nor had any aid which that officer re- 
quired ever been refused. It woul4> 

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Cai?. K] 



yeed,Iivpebeen an iDJattke to luoi, to 
Mr MQjf and to the conntiyy to have 
teifcd him on such points.— -Conn, 
^mg the fiAject in all its bearings» 
W could any blame be impotable to 
jgiBicten? It was admitted, indeed» 
tint at the period when the French 
annies were eogand with Russia, the 
cmportiaity was nivourable for a great 
c&rtiathe peninaula* hot considering 
the OBoeftnnty of ivar, and the respon- 
ASkf of government fbr the perpe- 
tsal protection and safety of the empire^ 
voold it have been connstent witni its 
dsty, fnr the sake of one extraordinary 
eibrt, to throw away the means of fu. 
tore exertion. As the most brilliant 
campaign has often no decisive infiu- 
(sce upon the fate of war, should a 
viie goveniment cast all on one di^— 
hasard thepovrery and shed the heart's 
Mood of a country, merely to make a 
Iburufti — and risk perpetual strength 
for the trnemiph of one year ^ A go- 
vemmeot entrusted with* the manage* 
Bent of the resources of a great em- 
pire, 18 bound to recollect that it has 
to provide for the future as well as the 
frnent, and ought to look to the safe* 
ty of the whole.— -The country ought 
to koow what exerdons had actually 
bees flnde, and it would be convinced 
of their sufficiency. But when the as- 
KTUOB was hazarded, that more ought 
to have heen done for the peninsula, 
let OS look to the proudest peiiods of 
oor hiftory-*to the periods of King 
Wilisni and Queen Anne, when the 
gtat Duke of Mariborough wielded 
the energies of the nation with so much 
glofy and success. Let all the rela- 
^ circumstances be faiiiy taken into 
view.— Our means had of late aus- 
acnted in a sorpritiag ratio ; and with* 
i^tfvo or thiee years the increased 
•tmgth of the solitary force of the 
c oHBir y was great beyondexample. For 
vbat was the actual state of our force 
"ittiat quarter^ which it had been said 
ns 10 inadequately soppUrd ? We had 

on the 35th of June last»in the penio* 
sula and the Mediterranean, an army of 
no less than VSlfiOO men in our pay ; 
that was, 91,000 British, inchiding fo- 
reign or Gernum. troops, with 36,000 
Portuguese. Such was our force, in- 
dependently of Spanishauxiliaries, who 
received from us all the assistance in 
our pow^, in their formation, equi{>- 
ment, and pecuniary supply. Nay, 
the British army alone under Lord 
Wellington, at the period alhided to, 
amounted to 58,000. Did the exer* 
tions which collected such an army de- 
serve to be characterised in such terms 
—three years ago would any man have 
been so sanguine as to believe the col- 
lection of such an army practicable t 
Yet such had been the exertions of 
that government, which had also to 
provide for the protection of India, of 
our numerous colonies in the West* 
and for our domestic arrangements**^ 
As to the alleged deficiency of equip- 
ment in our army,— that our soldiers 
should be quite secured from privatioos^ 
that they should at all times be com*^ 
pletely equipped, it would be too much 
to expect in the ordinary vicissitudes 
of war» Where, howevei, such priva- 
tions occurred, and where they were 
reported by our illustrious conunand- 
er, his requisitions were immediately 
attended to. This could and woulcC 
no doubt, be. confirmed promptly by 
that distinguished commander him^ 
sel£— forit was a strikmg feature i^ 
his character, that he was as just ta 
those who supported him, as he was 
bold to those who opposed him — and 
it was another striking feature in his 
character, that he was never extraia« 
gant in lus expectations or detfiands | 
mdesd, he was never likely to make 
such demands, because ministers took 
care that he should be always accu* 
rately informed as to the means of 
supply* — That some inconvenience 
might have been felt from the state of 
the military chest no one could d^y ; 

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bttt the tappl J of specie at preMnt iniitt 
depend i^n a greet Tarietj of cir* 
oumslaiicety bejond the power of any 
minUtera to cootroul ; upon the meant 
of obtaining money for biUt on the 
continent) imd other causet* particu* 
larly the state of the Spani& cdo- 
aiet in Americay all of which natu- 
rally kiterfertd with the importation 
of bullion. Yet no blame could 
attack to gotemment) for nothing 
practicable was left undone by tbenu 
There was, howeter, a limit to their 
meaast at there was a limit to the 
means of any nation ; by that limit 
alone goTemment was confined in its 
efforts to assist these operations which 
k was called upon to extend.— -The 
Stciiian expedition was prepared to 
sail eariy in March, and was conducted 
throughout in concert with Lord Wd- 
liagtOD, who communicated regularly 
wiui the commander of that force. 
The appearance of this expedition off 
Catabina was of great utility, as it 
prevented Snchet nt>m sending rein« 
Jor ce m ents to Joseph Buonaparte, who 
in consequence evacuated Madrid ; and 
the arrival of this expedition at Valen- 
cia, instead of being a mistake, as as- 
anted, was the resmt of a concerted 
plan.— That the late campaign had 
eminently succeeded was obvious. For 
what was the object of the campatg^n ? 
Why, the capture of Ciudad Rodnffo 
and Bodajom, the expulsion of toe 
French from the south of Spain, and 
the raising of the siege of Cadis. All 
diese objects had been attained ; and 
vrould not that man have been deemed 
very sanguine, who at the outset 
vfould have predicted the attainment 
of such important objects, particularw 
ly the liberation of the Spanish go* 
vemmeat by the raising or the sieve 
of Cadiz ? — While the objects of the 
campaign had been accompitshed, many 
of the hopes excited by tne victory oc 
Salamanca had been disappointed. 
But that disappointment was not at- 

trtbntabk to amy want of energy oi 
the part of his majesty's Mvemment 
nor was the scarcity of artillery a 
Burgos any imputation upon goven 
ment ; for in fact there were thr« 
batterine trains on the continent ; an 
besides these, one was sent last Marc 
to Lisbon to be kept afloat, aubjcct t 
the orders of Lord Wdlingrton. A< 
cording to the opinion, hoviFcver, i 
the noble lord himself, Burwos mu 
have been taken, if at all, wi&out d 
lay, and before any artillery could I 
brought to him. But the failttre < 
our gallant commander's cakulatioi 
and &t oonaeqnent recapture of M 
drid, was owing to the refusal of B 
last«»:os to obey his conunanda ; whic 
refusal facilitated the movements < 
the French force, and daseoocerU 
Lord WelHngton'splanof operational 
With reference to America, it tr 
observed, ** that the dispatcbea of h 

Sivemment deariy demonstrated th 
e orders in council were the gre 
stumbling-block, in the way of 
amicable arrangement between t 
countries. Not only the acts of t 
government, but abo the acts of cc 
gress, expressly declared, that the i 
peal of the retaliatory measttre» t 
nonimportation act, depended up 
the rescinding of those ordeia. 
soon as that verr measure diould 
adopted, which it was now pretei 
ed the Americans regarded ae ina 
nificant, the American eovemm 
proclaimed that its hoatik mensu 
should cease to be enforced.— -It I 
been asserted, that we vrere unprej 
red for the American war i but wb 
and how were we imprepared i W 
we unprepared in Canada, or waa tli 
Buj neglect at the Admicalty i U| 
thu subject, as weU na with ivspect 
Spain, let the opponents of n^iai 
come to dose quartern— 4et them at 
facts — ^kt them brinv aomethin^ s| 
cific, and abandon that atjle oT lo< 
and genend accnsatioA^ of which i 

Digitized by 


Ceaf. 1.] 



Booifrluid been fiivottred wkh to sany 
■ rirfiwMi kk tlue'eDMrte of die ^isew^ 
Mb ** Now iwtotfcecoadiidiiy topic 
«f tfe ttoMe ^mutiiom'b (Marqtdt Wel« 
ktkf%ywbeckhf I have not/' tnddie 
fiaitcft Lma-poolr^ madenteofttiy 
espcetnon witn vmtct to the ouko- 
He ifiiHhiii to Whfefa Ido notaJh^re. 
Mj «taiabtt I hs^ always publidy 
nwirhniimit tyin dtitiWAjtct, Ihaf« 
#Bwae4f aw I apili fefliit) tse j>iBMal* 
ikm far anuriiig iiit» tile ftOMi4ora- 
Ifan W «bfc eidudie ^E^ites^ beeanae 1 
^iaMT ade- any Way to ka adjuitmek 
«f tlM^ cUiiia* Ukely to tiatkfy the 
frtwifen, 1 tbetefore think it more 
coMHteot 16 oppoae Ae propoaition 
m OBoef than to jeek to defeat it by 
arknt ate caBed marda or aecnritiea. 
I meet the caaihmD$ opei^ and pnb- 
liciy» and win neror attempt to duap* 
point thdr wiAet by any fittle nnder* 
iHMid «pipo«iti0n-^y any sehemea otr 
nmbferfn^. My ayatem of oppod- 
tSoa I ltd to he more fidr and candid^ 
wmd therefore I will cmitinne topm^ 
ane it. In atating chia to be mr m* 
•entioD^ Idedaremerclyinyindmdttal 
npinioii, without meaninflp to away the 
jadgmest of any of my nienda.^ 
Returning again to tbe aftura of the 
~ ^ it was remarked by other 
^ «< that thia waa the point on 
Diatera ought* by the ordinary 
r of pobcy, to make their effort 
aaadheranB in ftitourdf Rnsiia, since 
il omdd not be expected of this coon* 
&^ Umft it ahoold be able^ at one and 
dae aaeae tim^, to make nroper ev> 
ctfaan m dnt quarter, and nerve tht 
of Rnaaia in the nonh, by fur* 
f ber with men or money. M^ 
I would iK>t be inclinfed to ward 
any cenamre that might be ap- 
1 to tbeoit on the gronnd of re« 
to their efforts to carry on 
■mst vi^oionsly the war ra Spam $ 
bat there had been no rehxation -on 
their parts ; neither had they neglected 
tay Meana by wUeh it was poiaiU^ 
▼Oa.. VI. PAST I. 

for diem to obtaia paaseslion of a 
grsater disposable force. The miai* 
sters of the prince regent wine pre* 
pared to deiend diemsdves on the 
exercise of the means they actually 
^Bd possess, or could possess, and on 
their having employea the resoureea 
entiiNted to them to the utmost^ 
W it hout drainiw the country beyond 
tUit pohit which no nation could sas* 
tab or support. Ministers certainly 
eoald not have been expebted to 
attke these unnatural attempts (now 
suggested aa neoassfery or defended 
as politic) by gentkmen on the other 
side; by those who had ever incnl* 
cated np<Ai their miads the necessity 
there vn^ for husbanding onr re- 
aourtes, and, even on the peninsuk, 
keeping our exertions vnthin the 
bounds of the strictest moderation.'-^ 
It was obviously impossible indeed 
for ministers to enter on an amj»le 
elneidation of the me»ures respecting 
which doubts might be thrown «it 
on a night like the present, when aU 
the numerous points of policy con* 
aected vrith the country were thrown 
open for partial discussion^ and the 
attention was not confined to a sinde 
object, thongh man]r of thoae alluoed 
to were sufficiendy intricate and im- 
portant to require of themselves the 
utmost diligence of parliament.— The 
country dioidd be on its guard against 
being led to expect too much from 
knccessei^ or to deqMdr on account of 
reverses, even though they acdght bo 
aaxrh as to replace the allied forces ia 
the Ihied at Torres Vedias. It waa 
liot by one victory that the bte of 
Ae peaiiftttlak would be decided ; and 
it was a dangerous enthusiasm which 
wis ekvUted beyond bounds, even by 
sutha vi^dry aa would soon call forthe 
thiinki^ of the House ; or be depressed 
be^dnd measure by every fiuiure that 
might mend onr eXerdons. When 
by the m6st consummate general8hij>» 
that vktory unparalleled in the his* 
t » 

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toiy of the war^ and as glorious at 
ever addrnied the Briti^ name, was 
obtained ; that victory which was felt 
by the enemy to the utmost extremities 
of his force ; because our illustrious 
and excellent commander had accom* 
pUflhed this» was there any reason 
whateter to suppose that the entire 
French power on the penipsula would 
be at once annihilated, and the dlies 
enabled to nuut:h to the Pyrenees? 
The public mind was apt to become 
too sansuine, and to bdieve that the 
effect of a defeat like this would be 
the total destruction of the enemy in 
Spain. But when people reflectedt 
that, at the commencement of the 
campaien, the French force in the 
, peninsma amounted to 200,000 men^ 
which was perhaps reduced by de- 
tachments sent to the north to 
150,000, at the period of the battle 
of Salamanca, they would be inclined 
to take a different and more correct 
Tiew of the subject. They would 
observe that such a force, when spread 
over Spain, might have maintained 
possession of the country by keeping 
down the spirit of its population, 
which they were unable to do when 
collected info two great masses. After 
the memorable battle of Salamanca, 
they were rendered too feeble to keep 
possession of Spain, and instead of 
driring the British into the sea, as 
they nad often vainly threatened, 
they were driven in confusion before 
the British* But when they gave up 
the provinces and became a concen- 
trated army* any man looking with a 
soldier's eye, must observe, that even 
after the battle of Salamanca, the 
Marquis of Wellington had a heavr 
task to perform to drive the French 
out. of Spain. Every one must ap- 
plaud the spirit of the i people of tlu« 
country, whose exultation on the tri- 
umphs of their gallant countrymen 
in Spain was so great as to induce 
^ saagHiine feeling, not warrant^' by 

the actual atate of a&irs. But what- 
ever were the expectations of the 
people, it was right to state, that as 
for as Lord Wemngton*s prospects, 
with his knowledge ^nd inxormation, 
went, they had been largely and li- 
berally accomplished. 

<< Lord Wellington had of hte re- 
ceived supplies ami reinforcements to 
a gprater extent than ever. In the 
course of last year, 20,000 men had 
been sent to join him, and although 
large reinforcements luid not arrived 
since the battle of Salamanca, the im- 
possibility of sending men with all the 
dispatch which might be deswed was 
the sole cause of the delay. The 
eatertions of the government, and in 
a peculiar manner of his royal high- 
ness the commander-in-chief, to bnng 
regiments to such a state of profi. 
ciency as .to reader them fit for fo- 
reign, service had been incessant and 
strenuous. The grants from the mi- 
litia had not been available as a re- 
gular force eadier than the month of 
Slay, an4 i^tber the internal state of 
the country, nor that of Ireland, would 
at a fomier 'period admit of those 
forces bein^ spared, which might 
now be umted to their gallant com- 
rades in the glorious task of deliver- 
ing the peninsula. The greatest poa- 
sibue efforts had been ma£ for an- ac- 
tive campaign.— It was perfectly true 
that the aid to Russia ought to be 
given in Spain ; and in proportion ai 
the north opened prospects of greatei 
success, so ought, vre to make mon 
strenuous effoits in the peninsula. — 
With respect to the war u the nortl 
idl the world must feel, and none fell 
it more than the illustrious person ai 
the head of the Russian empire 
that it was not to be expected iron 
this country that it should coakt 
larger sacrifices, or in other quarters 
than it did at present. That grea 
monarch did pot call on us for pecu 
piary support. He said, «< You an 

Digitized by 


CkAP. 1.] 



iigldog my CBiite» and the came of 

tke world in Spnn» and there it it 

tbt your ^orts wjffk be most »raiU 

lUe aod efficacaons.'' His Imperial 

Ifaesty €dt this to be the proper 

poocy in the coBinioQ caase, and tn-> 

Head of looking to us for aid in the 

Borth, he had counted on the pa- 

txiodaBv the Hberalttyy the spirit^ aad 

df lo jaky of hia people* to tupport 

him IB the gveat strug^ for inde- 

pcadenee, in which he waa engaged^ 

ad to oa he had looked for the> 

eiectval canrjtng on of the contest 


".Rwaia had taken the field to re- 
ait the eocroacfaments of her adver- 
orj, and therdbre there could be no 
iapi o pii eiy in speaking openly of her 
Jaeasores; but as Swe£?o had not yet 
taken a^ step so decided* ministers 
had a daty to perform which ren« 
dered k ^lery difficult to make aoj 
open or cxplick statement on thw 
point. Yet if tbt exertions of Swe* 
den, necessarily more limited than 
thoae of Russia* had required thej>e- 
csaiary aid of the country* to ef^ct 
adrretaion in the rear of the French ar- 
vies, nunistera would have been ready 
to assist her operations to that extent. 
France had committed an unqualified 
aggiessi o u on the Swedish monarchy* 
w&h had aa yet been only met by a 
qoahfied resistance. What was the 
mouve for collecting the force upon 
hrr coasts minister^ could not be ex- 
pected to explain ; but it would be 
obsr i iied ^th a feeling of hope* that 
b e tw e en these great northern powers* 
(lor they were both great) and out of 
the late contention* which had led to 
thp dttmembennent of the province of 
Finbad from Sweden* a system had 
amen* which happily had hnked them 
together in the bonds of the closest 
firieD^hip and alliance. This fact was 
ohvioQs mm the very conunencement 
(d the campaign, when it was easy 
to perceive that a pofect uaderstandt 

in^ existed between the two coun- 
tries. ^ It was evident that Russia re* 
posed confidence in Swedm* a» «he 
withdrew the mass of her troops from 
their cantonments in Finland. But 
those who were not satisfied with this 
demonstration of friendship, must 
have every apprehension relieved by 
the event of the personal interview 
at Abo* after which 1:8,000 men 
from the port of Swinburgh ^ were 
^tispatched to Ri^* where they ar- 
rived in time to join general Wittgen« 
ste^i at the most critical period* and 
enabled him to turn the tide of war in 
that qaarter* and to defeat the object 
of the enemy. If there had been no* 
actual military exertion on the part of 
Sweden* yet much benefit had been 
reaped from the posture she assumed. 
Much as we mignt wish other powers 
to enter into resistance against the 
enemy with as great energy as our- 
selves* yet when we cotfsidered that 
they did not possess our advantages* 
and were not so remote from dknger 
as we were* we ou^ht to look with 
forbearance to their measures* and 
not impute want of virtuous feeling 
to them* because they might not 
embark in hostilities with all the 
decision which we desired. The 
position assumed by Sweden had the 
effect of detaining, two corps of the 
French army from active operations* 
which were left in the confines of 
Denmark. These corps amounted to 
60*000 men. The most advanced* 
that of Victor* the enemy had not 
ventured to employ till after the bat- 
tle of Borodino; and in fact it had 
not advanced till September* when 
it proceeded by detachments to join 
the main army. The other corps, 
that of Augereau* was still more re^ 
tired in Germany, and completely 
withdrawn from hostile operations, 
Russia had a well-grounded confi- 
dence in the amity of Sweden* and 
the demonstration made by the latter 

Digitized by 




power had p«raly«ed eOfiOO nen of 
the enemy't force. On these grouocb 
ministers would be prepared to meet 
fmy fiitnre disottsaoa on such subjectt 
which might be thought necessarj.-*- 
<< With respect to America, it was 
true* that in negociation too much for- 
bearance had been shewn towards her. 
But the war after its coiMntncement 
was not carried on wit*, greater for* 
bearanoe than was dictated by a con 
sideration of jthe other contests in 
n^ch this nation was nnhapndy en* 
gaged. Ministers would justly hare 
draws down the yeagcanoe of the 
countrr, had they withdrawn a force 
from tne peninsuui for the purpose of 
prigioatingbdligerent measures agaiust 
America* It was admitted that the 
declaration issued by America* if per- 
severed in, would preclude for ever 
any prospect qf peace i but the spaedi 
from the throat in its alluabn to thia 
topicy referred to the state of A>neric« 
at the period when this declaration 
was ikiwd.. Ministers had neter as* 
sured the House^ nor the country^ 
whatever had been done br others, 
that the conoewions winch tney were 
induced to make to America would 
kad to peace | on the contrary, when 
the repeal pf the orders in council 
wu d is cu s sed, they Baid,-^in answer 
to those who contended, that if theK 
measures were abandoned, peace would 
be the p>nsequenoer--that the claims 
relative to blockade and impressmeat 
would disappoint their expectations. 
It was not however till after the war 
broke out, that the AmericaiLgovem- 
ment alledged other grounds of war, 
than the orders in council and the sys- 
tem of blockade. The question of 
iaspressment was previously only nrged 
as an angry point of discussion.^* With 
respect to the course taken by mi- 
nisters when they acquired a know- 
ledge of the actual cosunencement 
of the war, they had done what was 
tantamount to coaiplete hostility; 

and it was not from a spirit of for* 
bearanoe^ but from a consideration of 
the other circnmatances of the ccnsn- 
try, that they had refrained from tlie 
immediate issue of letters of marque 
and reprisal, and from pid)liAiMr to 
die woiid dieir case agmost the Uiri* 
ted Sutes. But although letters of 
itaarqjue and reprisal wtte not issoed, 
war was as efiectoally waged in kioo- 
ther mode ; and this course was lbi« 
lowed from a desire to keep die cooa* 
cib of ^^ovemment ready to meet any 
disposition which might arise on tbie 
part of America towards peace. Had 
they not acted in this manner, they 
would have justly provoked censure, 
if America Imd on the receipt of tbe 
intelligence from Uiia country witlt* 
drawn her declaration, and restored 
the British property whidi had been 
seiiDed, while the British goveramcnt 
was uoaUe to meet this pacific dispo* 
sition by a correspondent restitution^ 
without coming to parliament to ob« 
lain that sum wUdi had found its 
way into the coffers of the captors of 
American ships. The moawnt the 
declaration or war was received, and 
so soon as it was known that the A- 
mericans had proceeded to the con« 
demnadon of Briddb property, and 
refosed to ratifr tbe armistice con- 
cluded b e t wee n tocm and the governor 
of Upper Canada, that aooment the 
letters of marqoe and reprisal weie is- 
sucd.-*It hadbeen jusdy reoreaented as 
strange, that no answer had been pub^ 
lished to the American declaration 
which could be so readily refuted, and 
it had been added, that govemmenl 
was bound to give some mve f nd 
weighty reasons for not taking thsi 
ofSpal step. Bbt let it be reosemben 
ed, that although we vrere actually st 
war with America, yet negociatiom 
had not absolutdy tenninated. A 
mission had been entrusted to Admiral 
Warren, and a proposition submitted 
by him to the American govemmenti 

Digitized by 


Chap. L] 



ti vUdi BO aativcr had been recdfcd. 
TkecHK prapoQiam was intended t» 
Ineba OMNle throogk Mr K>8ter ; 
btabchnd left thr coontrj befisre 
thribpAckirimd, the butineit had 
oi Mcnritf devohFcd upon tlie admiral 
tatktfiMu Uttder these drciiiki*> 
«Bn^ and waiting few the reply of 
ifeAancHi govenunentt niiaisten 
Wild Imc note ootitiilledthcu' fed'- 
ap te their Jqdgmenta had thnr 
M^ pit fortli die answer whi<» 
% ttthaHebea prepaaad to giaa 
li ifae cafanaaies of Amenca* — it 
a» tmt that the British gOTeni* 
MM had aever endeavoured to foroe^ 
thats^ the iater^antioa of neotrak^ 
loM ' aumfKtnsws into France; 
^M icgitd to the ttuss^nof Henrfy 
it an Mt aeoeisarf that auoisteia 
I^obU sow piMish any disaTowal of 
*• IWy had disa;irowed it in dieir 
f^Knin^RliaMat, and declared they 
aRKrhofw of it nnttt th^ saw tlie 
f t Hmtkm by the American isxeon* 
^ C w e j aa ic ui bad disavowed it 
to the AaMiioan' cabinet, to satisfy 
^'^tfaiyhad sca^ ofcr all t^a pa« 
F'vvkh which they were ao^naintsd 
• theaAjsct*^' 

. Lm^ theK details, and raveit* 
■I to die general state of affun, it 
g»*ri ,**Whee had ^speech been 
^^^'tnA 00 the opening of parlia- 
"^ which contained so cheering 
l}f of sncceasea, or displayed a 
2^^ praopeaa of advantages u> 
vcoaftuyr If it eouU not be said 
f^^the eaeaiy was sltog«ther dis* 
^"^^ and finally and effectually 
^•■ui, vet he never was so danger- 

"^■f caouaitted agnast the ^(rftm^i 
y o tcottBfttiH, but in which the 
9|*i were anrayed against him* 
j y W i not, as formerly, waH 
P*^^ osly off aeaos to reerait 
^ xmarcost aogWDt'luo foreesy and 

open to him a prospect o^ more ex- 
tended conqnesta. Though he could 
drag his tributary states into the field, 
and amass a powerful force from thos^ 
whom he had already ovtfroooK, yet 
in the great scale on which he was en* 
gaged ne met with no aids to enable 
Sim to cany on the war vigorously $ 
he anet at all points with national re- 
sistance, he was obliged to bring his 
supplies from a distance, and t6 ex- 
haust' the auserable aations oter whom 
he exercis^ his ngorous sway. Iti 
Russia the apirit ofoppooition to his 
aggrressions was, as noticed in the 
speech, unparalleled in history* Thci 

Kple of that country had been spo- 
of as barbarians, and as being a 
century behind the other nations in 
oiviliaation | but could we find, that 
in any country a resistance to invasion 
00 ffiorious as that which was no# 
displaytd had ever been made-^ spi- 
rit of resistance, firing eVery rank and 
descriptioa of men, in the vast Russian 
empire i Nof was it for courage alone 
that the Russians had shone oonspicu- 
ouo during this contest f that hcroid 
valour for which Uley were lamed on 
foHntr occasions, was net now theil' 
only praise } the military cenncils and 
skiU of the eoramanders also shone 
forth pre-eminently ; and the whole 
conduct of the campaign proved them 
to be equal to the most difficult situa* 
tions and trying emergencies. The, 
retreat of we numerous bodies of 
ttoops from the Niemen td the Mosk- 
wa, and^e able and judicious manner 
in ^hich it was conducted under pre8S«» 
kg Giroumstances, was scarcely to be 
equalled in the history of the most 
<!eiebrated ntiilitary ttantectionsj The 
retreat of Moreau, on which his high* 
est fame rested, no militarjr man would 
say cooM be placed in competitioil 
with this in Russia. How few ar«> 
mies had marched over 500 miles of 
eountry before they united into one 
nmh tavariably baffling the immenia 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



force of their eiMmyy fighting varioue 
battles^ and never putting it in the 

Eower of that enemy to say that he 
ad dispersed a single regiment, or 
.captured a single gun or baggage* 
waggon I So fine a movement was not 
-surpassed in the history of the world ; 
jt evinced on the part of the Russian 
commanders the utmost skill and abili- 
ty, which, with the known valour of 
the troops, added fresh hopes of the 
deliverance of Europe. The interests 
of this people were now identified 
with our own in the most mtifying 
manner, by the approach of their fleets 
to our harbours ; a mark of confidence 
on the part of our ally which was cal- 
culated to humble our enemies, by 
proving to them in what estimation 
were held the good faith and generosi- 
ty of England. The emperor Alex- 
ander had shewn a glorious example of 
what a monarch ought to be, and had 
his policy been acted upon by others, 
Europe would not have been in its pre- 
sent state of degradation. He had 
not placed his strength in a capital 
city, but had truited to the spirit of 
his country to stand by him and to re- 
pel the invaders ; and in this expecta- 
tion he had not been disappointed.''-— 
After tlie very full discussion, of which 
an outline has been given, the address 
was carried in both houses of parlia- 
ment without a division. 

On the 23d of February Sir Fran- 
cis ^urdett made a motion in the 
House of Commons for leave to bring 
in a bill to provide against any inter- 
ruption of the exercise of the royal au- 
thority in the event of the death of his 
royal highness the prince regent, du- 
ring the continuance of his majesty's 
mahuly. In support of this proposi- 
tion it was contended, that violent en- 
f:roachments had been made upon the 
true. principles and frame of the con- 
stitution of this <x>untry, by the naea- 
sures adopted in consequence of the 
unfortunate affliction under which his 

aiajesty was suffering. The first en 
croachment occurred in the year 17Sft 
The whole of the proceedings of thai 
yeaf involved an unwarrantafie depar 
ture from the principles of the consti 
' tution, and were supported with n< 
other view than to keep power in di< 
hands of the party then in office, with 
out any regard to the intereatt of tka 
state, or respect to the legal govern 
ment of the country. At that perim 
the constitutional and safe, thoi^h no 
the successful doctrine was maintains 
on the one side, that upon failure o 
the capacity of the person filling tb 
throne, the exercise of the funcuon 
of royalty imcuediately devolved upoi 
the heir apparent* But tlus simpl 
and obvious position was denied, an< 
it was insisted that the heir apparen 
to the crown had no more right to tb 
government of .the nation than an^ 
other of the king's subjects. In tb 
strict legal acceptation of the won 
«* right," there certainly was no right 
because there was no law, and wner 
there is no law there can be no right 
but upon every principle of propriety 
and expediency, there coidd be n! 
doubt of the line of conduct whid 
onffht td have been pursued ; for no 
thmg could be more easy and safe thai 
to follow that example to which th< 
&ction seemed blind, which had beei 
set at the glorious revolution in 1688 
If the proceedings of pariiament hac 
been governed by that wholesome pre 
Cedent, ministers wonld not h^hre beei 
allowed for five months to take inU 
their own hands the govemineBt oi 
the country ; and instead of the usur 
pation of an odious oligarchy for that 
period, there would have been no sus 
pension of the powers of the crown 
no departure from the l^^Mlinff princi 
pies of the constitution. The sttnM 
however, taken in 1788, wert; juatafiec 
on the plea of necessity. But the^x 
ercise of the functions of the xrowtf 
forms an esieotial part of the coaatitu 

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Cbap. 1.] 



tioB ; sod there are two leadiag prin- 
dplet that ^Tem the whole of this 
^eitioo t First, That the powers tfnd 
perogatifes annexed by the common 
Inr to die crown, descend by heredi- 
tary «icce8sion> and not by election i 
Secondly, That these powers are never 
wpeaded; the functions of royalty 
mcr oeate, for if they were for any 
period isterraptedy the destruction of 
oiepm of the three essential branches 
if the coostitatioD would invohe a to- 
taldi»>lation of the legal gOTemment. 
At the period referred to, these two 
Wadiog principles were unnecessarily 
■i nownrantably departed from. 
' "The great dan^r which must arise 
fa» admktiog the plea of necessity, 
Im become oSvioas from subsequent 
apmMcc,for in the year 1810 this 
nichieT(NM precedent was followed. 
In ISIO the violeikt usurpation was 
'wewed, aod tbat which ought to have 
^ coosdefed aa a beacon to warn 
nnten froa a dangerous coasts was 
■•^iken for a tore light to guide them 
a m§etf to btrbour. From the evi- 
face of tile physicians it is known, 
^ during the interral between 1788 
^ 181(^ his majesty was sometimes 
■ » rtate of mind that rendered him 
Jjowaprtent to the consideration of 
«j»e ioqportant matters of policy 
'«MtiiraBy devolve upon the sove- 
'^ ; and the person whose duty it 
*■ to sahmit them to the kmg, ab- 
5"*^ from so doing, in consequence 
\ «die itate of the royal mind. To 
J* degffe the malady existed ; how 
•■iaiiters presumed, under cover of 
^f||OTfaI authority, to exercise the 
P*"*" of majesty at a time when the 
^fflat of the throne was unable to 
^•Jge the duties annexed to that 
^'wstation ; noone knows, although 
**"y be reasMid^ from the testi- 
JJJ"T of the physicians, to conclude 
^tht gownment of the nation was 
2"^ on in the name of the king bv 
"Hwf^iits at atime when one biaoca 

of the constitution was incapacitated 
by disease,— when the situation of his 
majesty^s mitid did not permit him to 
perform the important duties apper* 
taming to his high office. Thus, then^ 
there appear to have been two violent 
deviations from the established princi*- 
ples of the constitution, of suph a na- 
ture as to be subversive of the inte- 
rests of the throne, and destructive of 
the security of the subjects. The mi- 
serable fiction which was resorted to cm 
those occasions implied a deception too 
gross to impose upon the most super- 
ndal observer | for it seemed a most 
alMurd consecration of an act com« 
pletely illegal, to get the lord chan- 
cellor, without any adequate authori- 
ty, to affix the gretkt seal to it ; thus 
pretending to give the roval approba- 
tion to a measure of which the king 
could have no possible cognizance. 

<*Many reasons call upon the House 
at the present moment to come to a. 
decision as to the mode of proceeding 
on a contingency, which is possible*. 
th«u?h jperhaps not probable, and 
which, if not provided against, may 
again place the country in that situa- 
tion in which it would be deprived of 
all legal government^ in which the ma- 
jority of the House mi^ht usurp and 
retain all the powers that belong to 
the crown. The object of the modoa 
was to prevent, on future occasibas^ 
this lawless assumption of authority, 
ta destroy that pretence of necessity 
which it is plain never existed; be- 
cause, in truth, by the constitution of 
the emphe, a choiccf indeed many 
choices, of legal remedies remained. - 
On a recent occasion, however, thia 
illegal mode of proceeding was resol- 
ved upon, and the House not only 
took upon itself to nominate the exe- 
cutive magistrate; not only, on iuown 
authority, resolved to supply a throne 
which never could be vacant* but it 
went still further, and usurped the 
power of declaring that reurictioni 

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ihouU be placed upon the perton wkom 
it iovetted with Mme of the preroga* 
ti?et of the crowo, all of which were 
beatowed by the common kw for the 
benefit of the. peoplew F^liamentpro* 
eeeded to far m its atsumption otau- 
thonty, that the Prince of Walea was 
unwilhngy nnder such condttiotttf to 
take upon himadf the task of govern* 
meat. In that able letter written hj 
hit rojal Highness in the year 178^ 
in which he so distinctly^ accnrateljp^ 
and perspicuously defined the ptinci- 
pies ot the constitntiott, and the insur- 
mountable objections existinir in his 
aoind to the mode of prooeedmg sng* 
gested» he at length consents to act as 
regent^ with no <Hher view than to put 
a pmod to the anarchy vMgh pre* 
vauidy conceivmg that the evib resnh« 
ing from this line of conduct would 
be kss than those which might arise 
iirom the continued abeyance of the 
third branch of the constitution : he 
accepted the kingly power, mutilated 
as it was» rather than permit the con- 
stittttion to be further mutilated. Th^ 
greatest evil, the most dreadful cala« 
mity which the history of this country 
presents, arose out of a dispute regaro- 
iBg the succession to the crown, and 
hj not decidedly maintaining the con* 
sdtution as it has been happily esta>* 
biished in this respect, consequences 
equally fatal, calamities equally (faead- 
fiU, may again be endund. Pariia* 
ment is calCd upon, by a proper sense 
of its duty, to guard the peopleof these 
redms affamst contingencies which 
may enabte the minister of the day, on 
m pretended plea of necessity, to sub- 
vert the constitution, and usurp the 
government of the country. Such was 
the object of the motion. It is right 
at all timet to give to the regent powers 
as unoontrouM as those which belong 
to the king himself. The principle 
upon which this proposition rests is 
this, that the incapacity proceeding 
fraa insanity is like every other spe- 

cies of incapacity, and amounts to an 
utter vacating of the govemmoit. 

** The kii^ly office is not by the 
constitution bestowed for the bepefit 
of the individual filling the thipne, 
but is a trust exercis^ for the ad- 
vanta^ of the peppUt and in this 
view It is of great consequence; that 
it Aquld never oeaie. The crown, 
according to the oooimon law, lw>ff9 
neither mfiu^ nor insanity, or «)y 
other cause tbt can incapaffitar^ the, 
person holdin|^ it to discharge his. 
important duties i and if such caui^ 
do exist, it must be viewed in the. 
same light and treated in the same wuy^i 
as the natural death of Uie momiroh. 
If insanity should unhappily vi^t the 
spvereignt the authorityy bythe Uw 
of the &id, iBunediateIy<kvdveS;«)poa 
the snccosor, without the inteffere9ce» 
much less without the electipQ, o£ aojy 
set of persons who mfty be a^mw^.^ 
usurp powers which do not belopg tp. 
them. Such is th« obvious, sia^^lQi^ 
and legal mode of prooeedingi it^A^ 
vriU meet all possible ctrcuniatM^s 
and preserve the various branches of, 
the constitution tndepeadeni of eaf:b. 
other. . . 

^ If it be truc^ as is pretty generally 
beheved, that certain powerful indi- 
viduals by different means da fkce 
their dependanto in the Ha«s< of 
Commons, it becomes a matter of 
double importance, that a bitt should 
be passed to restrain such indtfiduals 
from usurping and exeroisii^ illegal 
authority' ; to remove a new motive 
for ambition ; to shew that the crown 
is not to become the prey of greedy 
cormorants, and that fictions must not 
hope to deck themsdveS in the trap- 
pings of royalty. The powers »ow 
exercised by the Prince Reeent, 
therefore, should, in case of the death 
or disability of his royal highness* 
be exercised by the heir to the crowo, 
the Princeu Chariotte of Wales. 
Factions should not have the power 

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to fll the diranc with whomioever 
tlqr pleifle» and under what condi* 
d08id«y pkaae* The geotkmcn of 
tkloQgidie Goohl DOt pretendt that 
tk PnaccM Charlotte of Walea was 
Ht of itffident aget becaiue the 
coBBiQa hwf as &r as relates to the 
axnray iaows uo iii&Bqr» aad |pmnts 
mtf it ^iraduoed, made by duldreii 
m ndi sitiiatioiiSy which bate been 
yd by lawyers to be absolutely bind* 
wgi the secoritT which the public 
misire kf that there shall always bf 
ttdeeatife govemment zealous io 
tk jiadiarge of its dntieSf aod re- 
ipOBuUe not only for the acts dooe« 
bit br the adfice gtiren. But bills 
ibr appointing rescuci^ have at dif- 
km times passed, in which it was 
praiided that the king or queen 
ilmlid hsfe a particuUr council till 
be or ihe cue toa certain age. Such 
pioiinoDS» howeier, were totally dis- 
ttact 10 their character from those to 
wkich hii nqral h^hness the Prince 
ttttat had b^eu subjected after he 
bid a^sised a full maturity of age* 
Tk ooaatry never before heard o£ 
ii4a rogency as the pre«entt e^Q^ 
tbe atteopt oi 1788» It was enacted 
isM for particular purposes, i^ the 
nguef Henry VIIL and Philip and 
l%f tha^ the full age of th^ sue- 
ttmrto the crown diaU be IS inihe 
■do, aad 16 in the females. But 
tewas BO occasion to dwell upon 
tboecaiesy as the Princess Charlotte 
^ Waica was in her 18ch year, apd 
^^oAnt by the admisiion of all par-e 
tie%€iAer waSf or woold very w^th, 
^ <tf sge to Qcerdse die royal 
^■ttoas. Inthe.evetitof thedeath: 
of the King^ andcf die Prince lU^/ 
8"^ BO one cai^ doubt but the roy^l 
wweiild dc^ceod to he% without 
ittbo^hithepowpr of the House 
vGoMBoastopfemitit. Umightbe 
««t thtt there v;ss SQ necessity ^ a9f 
J* vgaladom aa those proposed i. 
*Bt those matters, which eren lo pri- 

vate famiUeaaie not left to the contin- 
orencies of human life, ought not to be 
kft to a similar contingency in cases of 
so much greater importance. We have 
already experienced the mischief i^» 
suiting from the want of a fixed fule 
to follp.w I and it is our duty to pre* 
vent the recurrence of those conteata 
by which the power of the crown was 
torn in pieces for private and factious 
purpose* The danger to the crown 
from the late procee£ngs with i^gf^ 
to the regency must be obvious* l%e 
two hquses directed t)ie chftnceUor ta 
put tbe seal to an instrument appointr 
mg a person to exercise th^ roj4 
functions ; and this they called giving 
the royal assent to thiat instrument* 
Now what is there to prevent thar 
making a sifnilar use of the great 
seal, if they choose it» to alter .thus 
descent of the crown ? If the princi* 
pk is once adiuittedt ther^ is no limit 
to the naisol^ef that miay follow. In 
the intertegnum which took place not 
h>ng agp, they might have affixed tli|e 
seaf toi bills of ps^ins and penaltie^f 
The danger both t^ the crown and thi^ 
suljieot was inuninent. In these great 
constitutional principles, the Prince 
Regent luo^self and the. royal family 
concur ; for it is well known, thet 
in 1810 the royal dukes did protest 
agaitist the procefbdings adopted at 
that time> and were reviled, in thei 
grossest manner, by the ministerial 
writers, who ealkd them the «« Cdlege 
of Princes,'' and made use of o%he9 
4>usive termst though the royal duhesg 
both as subjects and aa persons neerl|( 
connected widti the throne, were per^ 
fectly justified in the step, which t^ 
^eok on that oocasiQn.^t appeaie4 
tp be the intention of ministers t0 
kmf the crown alwajs it a state oS 
pupillage to the ol^archy in the 
iiouseof Commonsi for in the Re» 
gency Act, it was i>rovided, that ie 
tbe event of its being necessair te 
appoint another regency, tbe House 

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should meet and take the proper steps 
for that purpose. The object of the 
present bill was to prevent the neces- 
•ity of this, and to put it beyond the 
power of the two houses of parliament 
to render the royal authority subser- 
vient to their will, and to parcel it out 
•8 ihey may think proper/* 

The motion of Sir Francis Burdett 
•was seconded by Lord Cochrane, The 
following is the short answer by 
which lord Castlereagh opposed it. 
<* He trusted that he should be able 
to show, that there was not a suffi- 
cient necessity to induce the House to 
agree to the motion before them. The 
honourable baronet, who had been 
induced by his constitutional views of 
the subject to bring forward the pre- 
sent motion, appeared to him to be 
more anxious to destroy the autho- 
rity of the parliamentary proceed- 
ings in the two former instances, than 
to provide for the contingency he 
stated. He appeared to think it of 
the greatest importance to subvert all 
the principles which the House had 
laid down on that subject ; and to 
get rid of what he considered a per* 
nicious precedent. For his part, he 
had a view of the subject directly op- 
posite. He thought it was a benefit, 
and a blessing to the country, that the 
great constitutional difficulties which 
attended this subject had been re- 
moved, and the point settled on the 
fullest discussion, which was after- 
wards revised upon the late occasion ; 
and in which the greatest legal and 
constitutional learning had been dis- 
played. He considered that those 
precedents would be a great protec- 
tion to the country hereafter from 
nmilar difficulties. He allowed that 
parliament had a right to enter into 
such considerations without a mes- 
sage from the crown ; but it was al- 
ways for their prudence to consider, 
whether they should expose them- 

selves to a conflict with the crown 

upon the point? lii any thin^ re< 

specting money, all conflict with tbt 

crpwn was prevented by the necessity 

that the crown should propose or pre- 

viously consent to tne grant. It 

common legislative measures this wai 

not necessary ; but it was obvious thai 

there was no description of questionl 

more likely to involve the House ii 

a conflict with the crown, than tho* 

. which touched the crown so nearly.— 

The contingency which was mentione< 

appeared to him to be so very re 

mote a one, that he thought the ho 

Bourable baronet, upon his own prirt 

ciples, should rather have proposes 

a permanent Regency Bill applicable 

to all cases, thian have confined him 

self to this particular contingency 

It appeared to him, however, tha 

what the honourable baronet wanted 

was to destroy the discretioTiar| 

power of parliament upon the subject 

and that he preferred to have th 

question determined on the hereditar 

principle rather than by the discretioi 

of parliament. In determining upoi 

which of the two principles the ques 

tion should be decided, there was cer 

tainly a balance of inconveniences 

But the reason why it was better tha 

it should rest in the discretion of par 

liament was, that parliament felt it t< 

be its first duty, to take care that thi 

royal power should be restored un 

diminished into the hands to which i 

legitimately belonged, so soon as ikh 

sovereign was again capable of erer 

cising his royal functions; wherea 

upon the hereditary principle, th< 

royal power being fully and immedi' 

ately transferred to the Regent, theri 

was not the same security for thi 

resumption of it by the sovereign 

when the temporary cause which aus* 

pended his personal exercise of it wai 

removed. He conceived that th< 

contzDgeDcy was not sufficiently pro. 

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boUe to juatHj patliameDty in the ex- Francis Burdett was not supported 

odie of Its discretion^ in adopting the in this attempt to overturn the par- 

pnposkicm of the honourable baronet» liamentary precedents so recently esta* 

kr wbidi leason he should certainlj blished. His motion was negatived 

fire it a decided negative.'^ ilu* without a division. ^ 

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ParliameKtary Proceedinf^s continueA^Vice'Chaneellar^s JBitL— >Sir Smmel 
Eomill^U BttUJbr imprachg the Criminal Lam* 

The great increase which of late years 
has taken place in the duties to be dis- 
charged by the Lord High Chancel* 
lor (» England, and the serious incon- 
veniences resulting from dday in mat- 
ters of such high importance, appear- 
ed to tho!ie beet acquainted with the 
subject to demand the interference of 
the legislature. It had become evi- 
dent, that if some remedy were not 
adopted, the whole of the judicial code 
of the country must be affected, and 
ffreat injury done to the subject. There 
had accumulated at this time in the 
House of Lords an arrear of 280 ap- 
peals, which, computing by the aver- 
age rate at which «uch causes had of 
late been decided, could not be deter- 
mined in less than eleven years*— This 
in itself was a serious grievance to suit- 
ors ; but the evil did not stop here, for 
by the delay in ruling disputed points 
of law, the number of new appeals 
was greatly augmented. In the de- 
termination of the causes actually un- 
der appeal, doubtful principles of law 
were often involved ; and till a deci- 
sion was obtained, the subject was 
kept in ignorance of the law of the 
land, and thus Htiffation was greatly 
incfeased. The deby offered a strong 
temptation also to preseot appeals for 
the mere purpose of postponing the 
efiiects of judgments ; as it was obvi- 

ous to unsuccessful litigants, that by- 
moving into the House of Lords they 
could put off the decision for a temai 
of years. The successful suitor might 
thus have been deprived of the benefit 
of the Judgment, and of the jusdce 
awarded to him for no len a period 
than eleven years.— It was the bound- 
en duty of the legislature, therefore, to 
establish some remedy for evils of thia 

The nature and extent of the evil 
could hardly admit of dispute, but as 
to the most suitable remedy different 
opinions were entertained. It was sag-' 
gested that the Lords mieht, by some 
new distribution of their business> get 
over the arrear of causes now before 
them, and prevent the recturence of si- 
milar arrears in future.— To accompUah 
this it was proposed, that they should 
sit after the session for the general poli- 
tical business of the country was clo- 
sed, and continue for a time to dis. 
charge their judicial functions* Bui 
to suppose that the Lords would re- 
main in town to hear appeals after tlu 
other affairs of parliament were dia 
patched, was absurd. There wma i 
strong constitutional objection alto t( 
the measure, viz. that it could not hi 
adopted widiout trenching upon tin 
prerogative of the crown in the proro 
gation of parliament* Such a reipifai 


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plated the crowa ta 
ikt ddicace and awkward atattHm of 
oAcr pcmifctia^ parlnment to tit a£* 
ter die nalinnil bunacM for wluch it 
bd beea aaaembled was &iiriied« or of 
Mag MMdce to the chimaoU who 
weicaatbebar af -the Honteof Lordf«p— 
Aataaaotber |n-opotaltiuit the Hoate 
oi Lork ■bcmld appoiat a comniittee 
1 of its asembert to hear ap« 
would rito hare 
L mprngoant to the coastittttioa. 
The public beai dea hadno right to ex- 
pect ipam the House of Lovdt that 
ihe^ wodd depart froai their aaual 
of boameat ; nor would the eril 
been remedied erea had their 
ited iBitead of fife 
to ait ior twice that titatf aa* 
leaatlK great adfantupe had been fore* 
of hamg the Lord Chancellor 
the pieaidkig oflker in the House 
of Feeta* Wiukont eacoonteiing this 
moat aai toaaincaiifenieBce the remedy 
Brwt projected woald have been only 
aa eacdiaDge of one evil for anothery 
and wonld have tiansfciied the arrears 
hoaa the House of Lords to the court 
of Chancery* by occopyiag that por^ 
taan of the Ijord Chaacellor's time ia 
the fiaemer^ vrhkh dariag the recess he 
is aocnstomed to devote to the latter. 
It vraa proposed by some penons 
thai^e JLardChancdlor should with* 
finoos Ins high situation in the 
' Peers^ and confine himself to 
the boataeas of hia ovm court of Chan* 
cery« Bnrto this, project there were 
naaydbvBoas objectioiis. The miost 
cBBBseat acatesmea who have turned 
dn- attention to thia point hove been 
^leed ia opinkm» that auch an altera- 
t»D woold d eiog a t e from the dignity 
«f the Hooae. No other individuu 
he found so well qmdified to 
thia laborious duty; for 
dsere are aeveral enaneat 
pecfs c jpabia of -peffonnnig it^ it 
" have bcea absurd to Uiink of 
a pertfuioent measare upon 

die prospect of assiitanoe from peen» 
aot of necessity bound to devote them* 
sdves to the pabUc service.:— The on- 
ly other ptan, therefore, which could 
be proposed, aras that the Chancellor 
should be reheved to a certain extent 
of his duties ia the court of Chancery^ 
and be thus enabled t6 devote more of 
his time to the other high duties of his 
o£Bce. The question tl^n arose (since 
it was necessary to provide some aid in 
the court of Coancery] vrheth^ such 
aid could be drawn from the other 
coarts of law, or whether a new office 
must be created? in the Court of 
Chancery itself there was n great, if 
not a growing, arrear of business— a se- 
rious evil, for which there appeared to 
,be no remedy^ unless by creating a si- 
milar evil ia another quarter — i^or if 
the Lord Chancellor had not hitherto 
called in the assistance of the Master of 
the RoHs, it was only because that 
could not be done without cmtiog 
much confusion in the Rolls Court* 
None of the other courts were in a 
situation taitford help, but were all so 
pressed with business, that the judj^es^ 
with all their diligence, could not fully 
discharge their duties. The court of 
Chancery too could only draw aid fron& 
a court, the decisions of which rested 
oa pnndples of equity, and were ana- 
logous to its own : But there is nd 
court in Westminster^hall, except tht 
court of £xcheqtter, which acts up- 
on principles of equity; and so m 
aras that court from being able to af# 
fard the aid required, that there had 
been a serious proposal for requiring a* 
additional effective jud^ in the Exche- 
quer, the arrear of business bdng even 
more pressing in that court thiein iA 
the court of Chancery. If the court 
of Exchequer could not supply th6 
want, no other court in Westminster- 
hall could. It was thought impossible, 
therefore, that aid could be derived 
from any of the courts in Westmin- 
ster-hall* It was in consequence 

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proposed thtt a pennaneAt officer 
should be appointed in aid of the Lord 
Chancellor. — Some persons imaginedy 
bowevery that such a measure would 
lead to great innovations in the mode 
of conducting business in the court of 
Chancery ; but nothing could be more 
inconsistent with the principles on 
which the measure was founded, than 
such a supposition. The appointment 
of a Vice-Chancellor involred the 
smallest departure from ancient prac- 
tice, and was scarcely an innoyation 
The chancellor already had the pri- 
Tilege of calling in the assistance of the 
nine puisne judges, together with that 
of two masters in Chancery, and it was 
intended that he should in future have 
permanent instead of temporary assist 
ance. The Chancellor besides had 
already the privilege of calling in the 
assistance of the Master of the Rolls ; 
and when that officer assisted the Chan- 
cellor, he was as much under his direc- 
tion as the judges under a commission, 
or the Vice-Chabcellor whom it was 
now proposed to appoint. The ob- 
ject of the bill, in short, was to af- 
ford to the Lord Chancellor perma- 
nent instead of temporary assistance in 
the transaction of the business of the 
court of Chancery, This plan did not 
imply any innovation in the mode of 
transacting business, although on this 
ground chiefly it was opposed. 

In support of the bill, it was stated 
** that it would not occasion any addi- 
tional ezpenste to the public, though 
It would be productive of so great 
benefit to the suitors in Chancery } 
and the question was, whether With 
those advantages to the suitor, with 
the removal of the evil complained of, 
and while no better plan was proposed, 
parliament should hesitate ? One half 
of the expense of the office woidd be 
charged on the profits of the Lord 
Chancellor, in the business of the 
court ; the other half would be taken 
from what was called the dead cadi, 

or suitors' fund, the annual revenue of 
which at this time was 90M. The 
revenue of that fund had on various 
occasions been applied, under the au- 
thority of parliament, for analogous 
purposes, and could not certainly be 
devoted to any better use than the sop- 
port of that officer whose appoiatment 
was in contemplation. The fund ooa- 
sisted of unclaimed monies in Chan^i 
eery, which had been allowed to ac- 
cumulate at interest. The salaries of 
the masters in Chancery, and of super- 
annuated officers, were paid out or it ; 
and the sum of 9000/. per annum was 
its present clear revenue unappropri- 
ated. Thus, as far as related to eco- 
nomy, there could be no objection to 
the bill. It had been said that there 
were other means by which the object 
of the bill could be more effectually 
attained, and it had been proposed to 
take the management of the bank- 
ruptcy business out of the hands of 
the Lord Chancellor. But even . al- 
lowing that this branch of business 
might with propriety be taken from 
the Lord Chancellor, still it wonid be 
necessary to have a Vice- Chancellor. 
But the bankruptcy law was so par- 
ticularly important in a commercial 
country, that it would be highly dan- 
gerous to entrust it to any authority- 
subordinate to that of the Lord Chan- 
cellor. It had been otuected, that in 
the distribution of the business in the 
court of Chancery the bill enabled the 
Lord ChanceUor to direct the whole 
at his pleasure x that he mi^ht allow 
the Vice-Chancellor to decide upon 
matters of such difficulty, that no aa- 
thority short of the LoitLChancdlor's 
should be allowed to di^ose of them ; 
or, on the other hand, he mi^ht only 
entrust to him matters of mmor im- 
portance, and by such an arrangement 
the character of the new magistrate 
must be degraded. To this it was an- 
swered, that the possible abuse of be- 
neficial powers ought not tp be al* 

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Cbap. 2.] 



kdfed as an ai^^iunent su;ani8t granting 
ikm, and that it ought on the coa- 
tnry to be presumed that the discre- 
tioo thus vested in the first law officer 
of the conntrj ip^ould be soundly ex« 
oosed. It was needless to speak at 
hrge on the impropriety of supposinff, 
thttt aay pertoo vested with so high 
an ofioe as that of Lord Chancellor, 
codd be guilty of such a breach of 
atf the ties of duty and of honour.— - 
Moth had been said about the increase 
of appeals which would be occasioned 
b^ the adoption of the measure before 
the House, and the erection of an in- 
tennediate jurisdiction. But it was 
the iatrrest of the suitors to have their 
caoses speedily decided, and the Lord 
Chaacdlor would have the power of 
btiaging at once before himself such 
causes as were most likely to be mat* 
tcr of appeaL At any rate, the oh* 
jectioa did oot apply with greater force 
in this case than it did to the courts 
of the Master of the Rolls, and of the 
poisoe judges acting under commis* 
ooo ; and surely the power of distri- 
bating business afforded such addi- 
tjooal meant of dispatch, as to coun* 
terbabnce any evils which might arise 
£roiD the increase of appeals. — It had 
beta urged, that the measure would 
tnnslonn the first law officer of the 
kiagdom into a mere politician, since 
he mi^ now entrust the decision of 
ail matters of importance to the Vice- 
Chancelior. But never was any opinion 
nare absnrdy than that which suppo- 
wi that a chancellor would abdicate 
bis judicial character ; the honour and 
netpoflsihility of this high officer af- 
Ms sufficient security against such 
aa event. Why might not the chief 
jattice of the King's Bench too with- 
^nm horn the execution of his duties, 
aad ntrust the functions of his office 
to hii asostants ? Lord EUenborough 
«ai boand to the performance of the 
^vies of his office only by ties similar 
**9 iho$c which bound the Lord Qhan* ' 

cellor ; there is no law which prevents 
his withdrawing himself entirely from 
his court, yet would any man dream 
of the possibility of such an event ? 
Was it not a suspicion eqtuUy chime- 
rical, to suppose that the Lord Chan- 
ceUor would remain idle, and leave his 
business to be transacted by the Vice- 
Chancellor? It would be absurd to 
legislate on suoh fancies. In Ireland^ 
business was so arranged that the Mas- 
ter of the Rolls afforded the same as* 
sistance to the Lord Chancellor which 
was here proposed to be given bv the 
Vice-chancellor. When the bill cre- 
ating such regulations vras first pro- 
posed, objeotions had been made to it 
similar to those now started to the pre- 
sent bill. The object which both the 
hills had in view was similar, namely, 
to provide an auxiliary to the Lord 
Chancellor ; and it was then said as 
now, that the Chancellor ( LordClare) 
would become a mere state officer. 
The best answer to this objection was 
furnished by the conduct of the four 
distinguished persons who had since 
the above period filled that high sta- 
tion. Not one of these eminent charac- 
ters had ever withdrawn for a moment 
from his judicial business for politic 
cal purposes, or ever betook him- 
self to the Master of the Rolls except 
as an auxiliary. Experience proved 
that the object had been attained in 
the case of the Irish bill, so that it 
was but rational to coi^clude that the 
same object would hf effectually ac- 
complished by the bill under the con- 
sideration of the House. — Some per- 
sons had maintained that the whole ex- 
pense of the office of Vicc-Chancellor 
should be charged upon the emolu- 
menu which the Lord Chancellor de- 
lived from the business in the court 
of chancery. That noble lord (the 
Chancellor) had stated, at the very 
commencement of the enquiry, that he 
wished for no profit which was not 
purchased by beneficial labour ; yet| 

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wbcn the importiiice and dignk j of 
hit office were conndered, and when 
the extent of the hbour attendant on 
the execntion of its duties wrre e^ti* 
mated^ it would appear bot reasonable 
that the Lbrd Chancellor should live 
a»ith |[reat splendour. He should 
have the means of pronding lor hit h^ 
mlj'^cr k was to be remembered 
that there was always much uncer« 
taioty at to hit continuance in office* 
The pention of 4000^. to ex chanctU 
lort wat by no means sufficient of it- 
self for this purpose, and it should be 
FeflBcmbered that there were many dit- 
tinnithed noblemen who owed the 
raniK and fortune of their familiet to 
the dijraified labourt of their aacettort 
who oiled the office of Lord Chancel- 
lor* It teemed to be reatonable that 
thit office thould be endowed more 
liberally than any other ; and that itt 
income thould not be looked upoA 
with jealouty. The office exposes 
the holder to greater cares and to 
more political uncertainty than other 
judicial tituationt which are held du- 
ring Ufe, at least during good beha- 
viour* Under these circumttancet 
parliament would not think of making 
encroachmentt upon the revemiet de- 
rived by the Lord Chancellor from his 
office.— -The measure, therefore, being 
charged with little or no expense, 
wh^ it was calculated to remedy two 
^reat evils ; and coming recommended, 
at it £d, bjr the sanction of all the 
great legal cJiaracters, seemed to be of 
such a nature, that all parties might 
be expected to concur in it." 

Mr Canning dittinguished himself 
by his opposition to this measure, and 
as his speech contains a good tummary 
of the argumentt urged againtt the 
bill, it smill be inserted in hit own 
wordt« On the 1 1th Februarr, when 
fb^ tecond reading of the bill was 
moved by Lord Castlereaeh, Mr Can- 
ning observed, ** It teemed to be main- 
tuned that the membert of this House 
were not fit to judge of tuch a ques- 

tion* If that ditqui£fisation wer^ 
supposed to apply generally, mud 
more forcibty must it apply to thos 
members (oi whom he was ofle) wh< 
could boast of no means of formioj 
a judgment but plain sense unadome* 
with tegal learning. He mntti how 
ever, protest a^inst any tuch plea i 
bar ot their ditcussions ; and mui 
deny that the lay part of the Houc 
were implicitlr to adopt the tHUo c 
certain learned personages in matu 
not of law but of regulation. H 
yielded all ren>ect possible to th 
tiouse of Lords, but could not ccm 
sent to pass the bill they had set 
down without examination. Son 
considerations indeed there were whi< 
might perhaps tend to diminish in tb 
particular insunce the general respe 
due to the authority of their lordship 
It appeared on the very fiure of t] 
bill that it arose out of arrears in the 
lordships' jurisdiction. They mig^ 
be better judges of the extent of t! 
evil^ but if the evil lay with them tj 
Commons ought not to exercise « 
lets jealousy m the examination of 1 
remedy proposed. A learned frie 
of his had tet out with rebuking 
excett of levity» and a want of gra 
contideration on thit tubject ; but 
thould have been aware that t 
tourcet of ridicule were not men 
in thingt which were themtelvet ri 
culoos, but also in the attempted ^ 
proximation of things which were i 
m themselvet recondleable— in l 
comparison of lofty pretensions w 
paltry meant— in the contrast of ms 
nificent promises with the total 
adequacy of the mode tuggetted 
following up and realizing them* 
the bill was to be considered as 
result of all the experience and ¥ 
dom of the other house, undoubte 
on that ground, an<i in that chanKn 
it was to be received with the great 
reverence ; but if it was found that 
this learned labour had only produ 
an office, which the legal profesf 

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soft treat with contempt ; then fa 
ipte of all jprepon e m i ont in its fa* 
ifonr, the ridicule againit whkb hit 
hooonral^ and learned friend protest- 
ed najriit Uameleady or rather must 
iDCdDiBy attach to it. ThebtUaaidy 
that whereaar ^reat arrears had been 
n waa necessary to do 
The diminution of this 
lolatioii miglity to be sure, be 
ipfi^ed ia either of two ways | 
bf deam^ the resenroir at once, or 
by impeding the channel whence it 
was constantly auppSed with so rapid 
a current. The biU appeared to fol- 
bw the latter of those two courses. 
Its moat obvioua and certain effect 
waa to occiision all the causes in 
ChsKDcery to be tried twice oter, a 
ptoccaa which must necessarilj ddaj 
the p ro cee dings of that court} and 
ao check the ruious rapidity of the 
aiream of appcala which flowed from 
ir into the House of Lords. If the 
tried wmdoaif the high legal attain- 
weatMf and pre-eminent authority of 
that great magistrate who had been 
to apeak from the Bench from 
L he (M r Canning) had now 
(Sir ¥niBam Grant) £d not 
ccmstant appeals to the Lord 
lor from his decisions as Mas* 
ter of die RoO^ it was idle to suppose 
llMtfrosn thenew Vice-chancellor, new 
ia oSoc^ new and unsettled in autho- 
ntj^ and (be he who he may) oroba- 
biy £v intetior to the present Master 
at the RoUs m legal Knowledge and 
aBBfieat diere would not be appeals 
%a the Liord Chancellor in a far greater 
aonSier. It was indeed attempted to 
htAtwUf that tUs new creation would 
be snadlar to the mastership of the 
^ ; but there was this e«iential 
between the two magis- 
S there was a chcMce aUowed 
ta die aojtor to have his cause car* 
lied before the Master of the Rolls or 
the Lord Chancellor, and therefore it 
waa the has fikely that he should de- 

▼Ob« ▼!• PAaT I. 

nre it to be reheard t but this bill 
gare the Chancellor power to refuse 
nearinff a case, and to send it to the 
Vice-chancellor: and in «very case 
which was thus delegated from the 
Lord Hiffh Chancellor to his deputy^ 
against the will and choice of the 
suitor, it was surely most natural to 
soppoae that the suitor would desire 
a bearinjg. Thus, therefore, the ac« 
cumulation before the lords might in* 
deed be prerented from increasing so 
ftst as at present, nnoe erery cause 
heard by the new magistrate would 

JrobaUr be heard again by the Lord 
lhancelK>r} and the suitor perhaps 
might be sickened by his first appealf 
and deterred from prosecuting a 
second to the House of Lords. But 
how would the device tend to the ac- 
complishment of the professed object 
of the bin, the allowing the Lord 
Chancellor more time for attendance 
in the House of Lords t After a]l» 
if the accumulation of appeals m that 
house be the evil to be cured, why 
was not some remedy applied £stinct- 
ly and at once to the seat of the 
eril? It was surely a derogation from 
the dignity of the House of Lords 
to suppose that they could not dis* 
charge the business before them; that 
their noble natures could not rise at 
nine o'clock to adjudge the causes at 
their bar ; that, with privileges so far 
surpassing those of other senates, they 
could not make an exertion for the 
discharge of those important duties 
which were anneaed to such high 
privileflres» . and which justified and en* 
nobled them in the eyes of their coun- 
try and the world. Why should such 
reasonings apply to them more than 
to the Commons i The Lords admit* 
ted a deh nr amounting to a denial of 
justice. What degradation or shame 
could it be to the Lords to adopt 
with respect to their own proceedings 
some such coercive regulations as ^e 
Commons had adopted to secure the 
t • 

, Digitized by 




ducharge of their own duty in causes 
of contested elections? The shame 
seemed to lie in stopping short be- 
tween the removal of abuse and the 
adoption of a remedy. Was it a pro-, 
blem 80 obscure, knotty, and difficult 
to deyise the means of securing a suffi- 
cient attendance in the other house, 
whatever skill it miffht have required 
to produce such a bill as this? No! 
let the House reject this bill, and a 
better measure would be proposed iii 
m very short time. An appeal had 
been made to their compassion in be- 
half of this unhappy scrap of paper, 
as if it were the offspring of some 
infant member, who was employing 
his untried hand, in his first and crude 
attempt to remedy some acknowledged 
evil, hopinff that a committee would 
lick his unformed abortion into some 
•ort of decent shape. Another learn- 
ed gentleman thought they were tread* 
ing on a sort of h^owed ground, and 
that they could not presume even ^o 
alter and amend the bill, such as it 
was sent down to them, without a 
•pecies of scandaium magna, urn a- 
gainst the legislative wisdom of the 
House of Lords ! The bill in fact was 
aU it cou\i be. A committee was 
useless. It would offend the Lords 
more to send jt back so changed, as 
it must necessarily be, if it was to be 
made useful to any good purpose 
whatever, than it would to reject it 
altogether j abstaining, however, at the 
same time, with the utmost deference, 
from presuminjg to suggest any other 
method of proceeding in a pase which 
appeared i/o be claimed as the pecu- 
liar province of their lordships and 
leaving their lordships to ^o to work 
again upon a new plan 'better jcalcu 
lated for their own credit and the 
public satisfaction. — He beg?ed par 
don for any seeming levity, if he were 
guilty of any in speaking with free- ' 
dom of this strange project : but 
thcr^ were different moods in which 

different men viewed die tame sub- 
jects : some might indulge in harm- 
less merriment; while ot&rs (he did 
not see the learned gentleman, Mr 
Stephen, present) mi^ht view this 
mouse which the mountain had brought 
forth with feelings quite ** meUnchoI^r 
and gentlemanlike,'^ like Maater Ste- 
phen in ** Every Man in his Humour." 
For his own part he thought there 
could not be a eraver. subject than 
the due ^nd speedy administration o{ 
justice : but on the other hand there 
could not be a more ludicrous asso- 
ciation than that of high magisterial 
functions, and great.omcial trust, with 
all the circumstances of d^mdatioa 
and disparageme. t with which the 
new magistrate procreated by this 
bill is to be invested. It was pretend* 
ed indeed, that the power of the Lord 
Chancellor to devolve business upon 
this new deputy, was to be no othei 
than that which he now has, to call to 
his assistance any one of the judges, 
or masters in Chancery, named in the 
commission, empowering them to ait 
for the Chancellor. Nothing could 
be more unlike. Compare the lan« 
guage of that commission with that 
of this bill by which the Chancelloi 
was to ring for his deputy. It would 
appear that the judges, when called 
upon, were reaUy to tit for the Chan« 
cellor, to sit as the Chancellor ; to do 
his business ; to execute his functionSj 
and the rssult was to be of as great 
validity, force, efficacy, and virtue, as 
if from the Chancellor himself. The 
new. gentleman to be created was to 
have full power, &c. but in such a 
manner nevertheless, and under such 
regulations and restrictions, as the 
Lord Chancellor himself shall from 
time to time order and direct I£ 
this was to be freedom, he wished to 
know what was servitude ? If this waa 
volition, what was coercion? What woa 
such a judge, but a man sitting on the 
judgment seat fettered hand asKi foot i 

Digitized by 


Chap. 2.] 



Aod WIS it potable to conceive that 
Of decision of such a magistrate 
cosld- be received as satisfactory and 
acqmesced in as final? Conceive a 
wancholy^ client coming into court, 
«Bd directing his solicitor to take care 
libat bis cause is set down for hearing, 
Bot hefiore that tedious indecisive 
die Master of the Rolls, but 
the LfOrd High Chancellor 
Soon afterwards he hears 
that his cause is, according to his di- 
rectioa, before his lordship himself. 
So mxich the better. At least the 
hearisff will be finaL Some time after- 
wards he is informed that his cause is 
decided agjdnst him— by whom ? By 
the Lord Chancellor himself ? No such 
tlmig ; but by a judge under the con* 
ststtt direction and superintendance of 
the C h a ncrilo r, subject ts his inter- 
fieieiice and controiu, to his revisal, 
amd reversal or aheration. — What con- 
•otbtioii coM this be to the suitor, 
who htd chosen the Lord Chancellor 
for his jodffe in preference to the 
Master oiF the Rolb, for the express 
purpose of avoiding the necessity of 
SB appeal, which would now be his 
only vefbge ? Was not this the mean- 
iig of the bi&t He heard some mur- 
anrs near him as if he was misrepre- 
senting its tenor and purport. He 
eeitaiBy did not mean to misrepre- 
sent k. The advocates of the bill 
had particularly praised it for its 
dnrness. It was indeed overloaded 
Wh perspicuity, full of qualifications 
wA bantations, and exemptions, and 
fiovMes, patching up one hole and 
■akaig another to patch up in turn ; 
aad mvoived in inexplicable explana* 
tisis. Bnt after all, vras not the re- 
sskas he had stated it, that the Lord 
OiMtceBor might send causes he did 
Mt flke to his Vice-Chancellor as he 
jijpwed, just as he would order away 
a corked bottle; was not the Vice- 
QaBcellor to ta^e whatever was sent 
b him 1 11 abstain from whatever vru 

not thus sent to him i To begin or 
to leave oflF exactly when and where 
the Lord Chancellor pleased, at the' 
beginning, or the middle, or the end 
of a cause— just as might suit the* 
Chancellor's nmcy ? Had he, or was 
he, intended to have any regular, 
known, fixed, intelligible substantive 
province or authority ? Scrub in the 
play, Mungo in the farce, Sancho in 
his island, were in a state of settled 
jurisdiction compared virith this new 
officer ! If the form of his tribunal 
were copied from any thing at all, it 
must have been from Sancho in his 
Httle idand ! It was to be a delega- 
tion by fits and snatches— the off- 
spring of the humours and leisures of 
the Cnancellor, dealt out in biu and 
scraps of jurisdiction. It really re- 
quired more credulity than the au- 
thors of the bill had a right to expect, 
to imagine that the bill, even though 
it shomd receive the polishing hand of 
any learned seijeant, could ever answer 
the purposes for which it was intended." 
As an unlearned member of parlia- 
ment, his vote should be against the 
introduction of a magistracy which it 
was not fit to create. It was not his 
fault that theproposition was so ob- 
jectionable. They had a ri^ht to take 
time to consider this biH, as the 
Lords had paused for eleven years 
before they hit upon this mode of re- 
medying an inconvenience of such 
mat and growing mischief. If in- 
deed it was contended, that they were 
not entitled to object to this mode, 
without having some other more per- 
fect plan to propose, he would answer, 
that he had no doubt another plan 
might easily be devised ; but he de- 
nied the necessity, or even the pro- 
priety, of originiting it in the House 
of Commons. The onus was on the 
Lords, but not on them. The evil 
was vrith the Lords, who pleaded 
their own fault, and applied fdt- 
the remedy. The evils he believed 

Digitized by VjOOQIC 



wertciUffgerBted, fod must viuiish at 
tbe toucn of a reiFormipg hand. Let 
the Lords adopt aa efficient measare^ 
nd the mati of evil would soon sink 
to a manageable jize. — He was un* 
^ble to follow the reasonioga of Chan- 
cenr lawyers ; but was sudi an office as 
a Vice-Chancellor efcr recognised in 
England before ? He felt the highest 
nespect br the present Lord Chancel- 
lor, but he must consider that he was 
called upon to legislate, not only for 
fjbe preaent times, but for posterity. 
He wished to presenre the office of 
Lord Chancellor in this country in 
all the plenitude of its powers and 
splendour of its authority. He be- 
lieved in his conscience that it was most 
esaenttally important to the constitu- 
tion that it should be so preserved* 
He thought that it was one of the 
highest prerogatives of the aovereiff n, 
that he could take a man from tne 
profession of the bar, and place him 
at oace by an act of power in a si- 
toation giving rank and precedence 
above ducal coronets. Thu high pre* 
ngative, however, like all others, 
ironld be exercised with a responsi- 
bility to public opinion ; and although 
tbe crown miffht make whom it womd 
Ucard Chancdlor, yet it would never 
will to make any nun a Chancellor 
who in the public eye was not con- 
ceived to be fit for that high situa- 
tion. He was not imputing any neg- 
Ugence to Lord Eldon, when he said, 
that if this bill should pass, a time 
might come when all the business of 
the court of Chancery might be 
thrown upon this new officer^ and 
the Masur of the Rolls, and that 
in^ future times a Lord Chancellor 
might be chosen chiefly from oUier 
caosiderations unconnected with his 
legal knowledge or ability topreside 
in the Court of Chancery. This biU 
might therefore lead to tliedeatruction 
•of the office of Lord ChanceUor, 
which he coooeived to be, aa it now 

stood, an office of the greatest import 
tance as well in a constitutional jKmit 
of view as vrith regard to the admi« 
nistration of the important duties of 
the court of Chancery. He, there- 
fore, could not support a biD whick 
appeared to him to do things utterly 
unwise ; to create a maflristracy unfit 
to be created, and to en£uiger, by in* 
novation upon its character and dutiesp 
a magistracy which it was of the high- 
est importance to maintain unaltered 
and unimpaired ; a l»ll not calculated 
to remedy the evil which it professed 
to obviate, and risking the mtroduc* 
tion of other evils which it miffht be 
difficult hereafter to cure ; a bill di» 
reeled to the removal of an obstmc* 
tion in the course of justice avow- 
edly of a temporary nature ; and ef* 
fecting (or rawer not eCfecting) that 
object by a permanent dismember- 
ment of the highestjudicial office of 
the constitution/'— Tne measure, not* 
withstanding this opposition, received 
the sanction <^ the legislature, 

tt has been frequently remarked^ 
that revolutions in the civu or criminal 
laws of a country are of all others the 
most difficult to be accomplished. ^ I^ 
is a salutary prejudice, no doubt, whiclv 
resists innovations so extremdy h%^ 
zardous ; yet when we consider wl: ' 
was the character of those remote a 
in which the foundations of our ju 
prudence were laid,— how rude 
savage were their manners,— how 
mited their information,-*and how i 
settled was the whole form of i 
it may with some reason be presv 
that there is scarcely a subject 
which a sober and rational spirit 
improvement may with more adv 
tage be emjJoyed. TheEngQebl 
been more remarkable, perhapa, 
any of their neighbours for a s 
and, in some cases, a superstitioiia 
neration of their ancient constttutio 
and their laws may dierefi>re be av 
posed to offer aa itroog a tempt 

Digitized by 





I of refbrm It thofee of anj 
It caonor be dhguised, 
Meedi tbac' notwi^ituuiding the ge- 
flcnl«tTength and soliditjof the fabric 
of thdr jurispnsdenoey and the distin- 
raibcdtdeat and integrity with which 
Vbat hwt have long been administer- 
tip dbere are aome paitt of their t^ 
taa fMeh bear visible marks of the 
tetnukm uid foHr of a ruder age. 
llioae who compbun of such absurdi- 
ties IB the leUer of the law, are told, 
indeed* that every thing is well mana- 
ged ia fMncfiee, and that in the crinri- 
Bsl CO& nothing can differ more than 
die pmnahments denounced, and those 
wWeh are actually put in execution 
^^asoflt offenders. Yet even this apo- 
IbfY seemSy in a great measure, to ad- 
flut Ufee nustsce of the complaint. The 
scatvte-book is disgraced by laws 
whkli are net executed ; the advanta- 
(ea oC a predse and written code are 
geedlesi?^ rebM^hed, and a strong 
CBCooragement is held ont to the most 
anttiary proceedmgs* /xmong the 
ettneat £ngliih lawyers of the present 
day. Sir Samuel Romilly has honour- 
ably di i Ungtti rticd himseff by his exer- 
tions to improve the criminal code ; 
aad as he made another effort durin|r 
^be pnesent session of pariiament, it 
nay not be improper to present the 
leader widi the substance of the de- 
hate which occurred with reference to 
iMi laportattt sulnect. 

On the 7th Febmanr, Shr Samuel 
RoauBy rose and said, **he hoped 
that in -again drawing the attention of 
the Honse to a part of the general 
laws of the country, which he had al- 
veady on a fonner occasion brought 
aader their notice, he should not be 
coBsid e ie d guilty of any impropriety. 
The bdl which 1^ at present theant to 
iatrodnce was one which had twice 
pissed that House ; but had been re- 
jected in the House of Lords. No 
person had more respect for the quar- 
ter froa.wfaidi opposition had come 

than himselfv and if he iihagmedy by 
again introducing k measure which had 
been considered' impolitic^ he should 
he supposed to act from the least <&• 
respect to that quarter, no persoh 
could feel more concern than he would. 
But from aH that he had observed 
since the last consideration of the sub- 
ject, he felt he should not be doing 
his diity if he did not bring the sub- 
ject mdet the attention of a new pat- 
liament. It would be in the recoUetf- 
tion of the House that in 1810 he had 
proposed to bring in three bills ; ooe 
of which was to repeal the act of King 
Wflliam, which rendered it a capitd 
offence to steal property to the amount 
of five shiUingB privately in a shop ; 
another to repeal the act of Queen 
Anne, which pronounced it a orpital 
offence to steal to the value of forty 
shillings in a dwelling-house ; and the 
third to repeal the act of George II. 
rendering it a capital offence to steal 
property to the same amount from on 
board a vessel in a navigable river. 
These bills were all passed in 1811 by 
that House, but were rejected by the 
Lords. At the present moment he 
should onlv move tor leave to bring in 
that one wnich, in the former discus- 
sicms, was considered least objection- 
able ; he alluded to that which related 
to stealing property to the value of 
five shillings in a dwelling-house ; and 
the principle on which he should pro- 
pose to introduce this bill, was pre- 
cisely the same as that which he had 
before stated, namely, the inexpedi- 
ency of penal laws existing which '' 
wefe not intended to be executed. 
This inexpediency was strongly de- 
monstrated by the returns of the cri- 
minal courts f9r London and Middle- 
sex durine the vears 180^ 6, 7, 8, 
and 9. He could not help here ex- 

gressing his surprise that these returns 
ad not, in compliance with tte ordei^ 
of the House, been made to a latcf 
period. During these few years it 

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appeared^ tHat the number of indin- 
duals committed for this offence a- 
mounted to 188» of whom 18 only had 
been conTicted, . and of these not one 
executed. This he trusted would be 
admitted as a pretty accurate criterion 
to shewy that it wasnot intended to 
carry the law into effect against indi- 
viduals who were found guilty under 
this statute. The consequence of the 
^ law not being executed, aa was already 
stated, was, that where some punish- 
ment was deserved, no punishment was 
at aU inflicted, and the offender esca- 
ped altogether with impunity. . This 
was an evil which could not exist if 
the laws were Uss severe, and a certain 
but mild, although effectual punish- 
ment was substituted* He did not 
mean to censure the forbearance which 
thus disarmed the law of its ferocity, 
but he condemned the retention of a 
law which^ was found too cruel for ap- 
plication, and which was therefore su^ 
perseded in almost every instance by 
a discretionary adoption of that wise 
and humane principle, that no un- 
necessary suffering, no useless pang, 
ought ever to be inflicted under the 
sanction of the legislature^ Upon 
this part of the subject^ he could not 
more powerfully iuustrate his argu- 
ment than by quoting the sentiments 
of a man who had once been the orna- 
ment of that house, and whose opini- 
ons would have weight far greater than 
belonged to any tmng that could fall 
from so humble an individual as him- 
self. In the observations upon our 
penal laws which were published in the 
last edition of Mr Burke's works, that 
distinguished person says, * The ques- 
tion is, whether, in a well-constituted 
commonwealth, it is vrise to retain 
laws not put in force ? A penal law 
not ordinarily executed, must be defi- 
cient in justice or wisdom, or both. 
But we are told, that we may trust 
to the operation of manners to relax 
the law. On the contrary, the lawt 

ought to be always in unison witk 
the manners, and corroborative of 
them, otherwise the effect of both witt 
be lessened. Our passions ought 
not to be right, and our reason, of 
which law is the orf;an, wrong.' The 
words of this admirable writer were 
never more applicable than in the pre- 
sent case ; for without some extraoiw 
din^ry aggravation, who was there 
with nerves strong enough to contemn 
plate the execution of this law t Who 
would say that any one for stealing a 
ribbon or a piece of lace above the 
value of five shillings, was deserving of 
death, if not guilty of some other of- 
fence ? He did not believe that there 
was a single instance in which the sen- 
tence had ever been carried into exe- 
cution. If there were any instance^ 
it would be very desirable to know 
under what aggravations the offence 
had been committed f and it would 
also be extremelv desuable that these 
aggravations, which had been the 
foundation of the punishment, should 
in future be made the foundation of 
the sentence. This would relieve the 
jud^res from that responsibility in de- 
ciding on the fate of individuius from 
their own private judgment, which 
constituted the most painful part of 
their duty. He was mmself satisfied 
that the effect of the law had been to 
increase the frequency of the crime. 
Laws, to be effectual, must hold out 
a terror to individuals. What tenor 
could a law carry with it, when it wae 
known that it was never put in force» 
but remained a dead letter on the stsu 
tute*book i He had on a former occa^ 
sion stated,, that no instance had oc- 
curred of the law against stealing to 
the amount of forty shillmgs on navi- 
^ble canals having been put in force. 
An aggravated case of this kind had 
lately happened, in which property 
had been stolen to the amount oiF 
some thousand pounds. This case had 
been cited agamst the principle of the 

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Chap. 2.] 



bin for repealiEig that act. jSut could 
this be coQsidered as a fair ground of 
objectkm i Because stealing to tlie 
amount of some thousand pounds was 
pmdsbcd with deaths was that a rea- 
ton why steaUng to the amount of 
forty fthdhogB should be punished with 
death ? He should, however, have 
congratulated himself, even if a law 
had passed to save the lives of those 
indiriduals. It was not likely that an 
instance of so aggravated a nature 
would soon occur aeain, and the effect 
of the execution of the tentence was 
to make persons dissatisfied with the 
cxistbg uiw. The trial had lasted 
three £iys, and the jury had the ful- 
lest opportunity to consider every cir- 
cnmstance of the case. Yet after their 
entire conTiction of the euilt of the 
prisoners, they had joined in an una- 
xdxnous petition to the prince reeent to 
spare the lives of those whom by the 
bw they* weie bound to condenm. 
Thefe could not be a stronger instance 
of the gener^ repugnance in men's 
minds to the carrying such laws into 

** The next bill he proposed to in- 
trodoce related to the commoti-law 
pmridiment in cases of hi^h treason. 
The sentence, at present, it was well 
Ilsowh, was, that the criminal shall be 
drawn upon a hurdle to the place of 
execution ; that he shall be hanged by 
die neck, and being sdive shall be cut 
down ; that his entrails shall be taken 
om of his body, and, he living,, the 
same shall be burnt before his eyes ) 
that his head shaH be cut off, his body 
he divided into four quarters, and head 
and quarters shaU he disposed of at the 
pleasure of the king. In point of fact, 
tkb horrible sentence was not now exe- 
cuted, the offender being hanged until 
desd, 'and his head being then cut off 
aid exhibited to the spectators, a prac- 
tice to his mind most exceptionable, 
when it was considered that it was cal- 
culated to excite only disgust in some, 

compassion in others, and brutal apa- 
thy in a third class. Mr Justice 
BlacLstone had said, that the practice 
of embowelling had been dibcontinuedy 
but it was well worthy of considera^ 
tion whether so shocking and ignomi* 
nious an infliction ought to be left 19 
the discretion of the executioner The 
judges had not the power of remitting 
any part of this prescribed judgment | 
for m the case of Captain Halcot* 
who was convicted in the year 168$ 
of being concerned in the Rye-house 
Plot, the judgment was set aside upon 
appeal to the House of Lords, becausey 
although the embowelling and burning 
had 6eendirected, the vrordsi^vfoenitf 
had been omitted* Tbes^ expressions 
were pronounced by that high tribunal 
to be an essential part of the judgmentt 
without which it had no legal ^dity 
whatever. — It was argved, that never 
any judge was known to require that 
the man's bowels should be burnt while 
he wad a&ve, and that the same was 
impossible to be executed.^ To which 
it was answered^ that to have bowels 
cut out ^kUe alioe was the most severe 
part of the punishmentf and therefore 
ought not to be omitted ^that to pre« 
tend that the judgment could not be 
executed, was to arraigti the wisdom 
and knowledge of all the judges and 
king's couhcii in all fei^s ; that the 
strict execution was not impracticable^ 
for that tradition said that Harrison, 
one of the regicides of Charles the 
first, did rise up and give the execu« 
tioner a box on the ear after his 
body was opened.— Ought then this 
punishment to remain to. revolt . the 
feelings of mankind, and furnish fo« 
reigners with a reproach against our 
national character r Ought the terrors 
of a vain threat to be displayed io 
the hour of the wretched offender's 
fate, to bereave him of his understand- 
ing ? Ought the question, whether a 
man shaU perish instantaneously, or by 
slowi bit^r, and p-otracted torments^ 

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to be left to the decitbn of the execu- 
tiooer t He wis ready to admit, that 
at later periods no such horrible scenes 
trere exhibited, except by ^dent, 
and such instances hao occurred $ but 
•nrely it could never be endured with 
any degree of patience, that the un* 
fortunate wretch who was doomed to 
sufier death, should be exposed to the 
most horrid tortures by the mere inat- 
tention or cardessnesf of an execu- 
tioner, while the judge had no discre- 
tion K^atever. It was true, that from 
the increasing humanity of the present 
times, the dreadful sentence of the law 
was seldom put in execution | but what 
other effect could it produce, he would 
isk, but that of frightening the wretch- 
ed culprit, when all those barbarities 
were denounced against him by the 
iudge i Nor was this the only evil ; 
the judges could use no discretion in 
those cases i they were bound to pro- 
Aounioe the dreadful sentence of the 
law, while the mitigation of punish* 
ment was left to the care, and the 
aggravation to the negHgence of the 
txectttioner. Nor were the addition- 
al cruelties sometimes exercised on 
those occauons always to be attri- 
buted to neAigence. Lord Bacon had 
recorded, that in the time of Oueen 
Elisabeth, they were generally ex- 
cused by the barbarities practised m 
odier countries | and Cambden rehtes^ 
that in Babing^'s conspiracy, when 
fouiteen individuals* found guilty of 
high treason, were left for execu- 
tion^ the first seven who suffered 
were so cmeOy tormented, that * the 
queen being informed of the severity 
ttsed In the executions the day before, 
and detesting such cruelty, gave ex- 
press ordei« that these should be used 
iBoreftvourabhri and accordingly they 
were permitted to hang till they were 
quitedead, befere they were cut down 
and bowdled/ He was sorry to say, 
that ia the hst rebellion^ in the year 
1746 Moll wai the state of inflanMna* 

tionwfaidi men's passions had attabedy 
that a MrTownly was executed with 
all those disgusting barbarities wluda 
he had submitted to the reprobation 
of the House. After hanging six mi. 
nutes, he was taken down, and laid on 
the Uock, but still showmg signs of 
UTe, the executioner struck mm on the 
breast, and finding this not sufficient^ 
proceeded to cut his throat. He was 
afterwards embowelled, according to 
the letter of the lawi^-The origin of 
this common-law judgment he had not 
been able to trace higher than the 
reign of £dward L when Darid, Prince 
of Wales, and the cdebrated Wallace, 
were executed for having bravely ana 
heroicallv aoaintained the interesu and 
defended the independence of their oa« 
tive land. The burning, in casea of 
petty treason and witchcraft, long re* 
mained a disgrace on the statute* 
book ;' it l^d been repealed in the one 
instance, ^ and blessed,*' he said, ^ be 
the memory of the man who had pit>* 
cured the abrogation of the dreaoftil 
edict." — He utended then to move for 
leave to brins in a bfll < to aker the 
punishment of high treason,' and also 
tor another bill < to take away the 
corruption of blood, as a consequence 
of attainder of treason or f<dony.' This 
corruption of blood, he begged leave 
to observe, was quite a distinct thing 
from forfeiture, and was, indeed, a sub- 
ject on which greac diversity of legal 
opinion had prevailed. It conristed 
in incapacitatuiflr the person attMntea 
from derising his property ; it lA 
him, in fact, without an heir, or, id 
technical language, disqualified him 

from tracin>r a peilijsfree. ' He should 

- W 
more of the time of the House with 

be ashamed. 

ig a pedigree. 
,^» he said, « to 

take up ani 

this subject, although he could quote 
passages from Mr Justice Blackston^ 
and other eihinent writers^ in fiivour ^ 
his m»inion.'' 

The Solicitor^General (Sir William 
CiiTOw) *< hoped the ilouse would 

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lUp kin wkile he made tome ge* 
mobienatioas on the principles by 
lUd bit boo. and learaed firiend ap* 
fimi to be actiuttedf although he 
coCttoly m not mean to oppose his 
ootioB. He confessed himself totally 
oopravcd to speak on the subject of 
pmoueat in cases of higb-treasoo, 
aslr&ad not understood before thi^ 
tUi voold f<tfni a part of the propo* 
in of his hen* and learned Iriendy 
yd he wonU sfiy that the baiilwous 
yPMshment so loiidly and pathetically 
oa^hiiied of was merely nominal; 
&d at to the corruption of blood it 
k^ been devise^ tg deter oiea from 
coamttias sttdb a heizious crune, for 
It ins wim known that i^dividualsj 
vhom no hnm^ or dinne law could 
keep in b<wind»f were restrained from 
cxia^^ by the consideration (^ the &te 
whi^ awaited thejir helpless orphans^ 
Aa io the fiiyt piQopQsition of his hon. 
andJeanied'frvni^Jie certainly agreed 
with bim, timf st the obligation of 
itxictly intCTfitjtxiDf and literally en- 
brcokg the promion of the criininal 
kwy arere impost on the J[ttdge9» no 
nm would accqpt an omoe which 
«oa|d ccm^ert the assi^ies ii^ shamr 
Uta. But if discretion must be rest* 
cd SQOKwherey where could it he so 
sifielv reposed as wUh the judges oJF 
the laad? Always referring an ap* 
peal to the fonntajui of mercy-r^n ap* 
neaL which, whenever good cause com 
be shewn in support of it> had never 
kea onde in vain.rtWith reppnect to 
tke pnaishment of transportation he 
amthe permitted to say a few words | 
sad possuily .he could npt do bettor 
tbaa to rewewhfit had come under 
his own hmqediate observation. He 
had SI tinae^ been called upon to as«it 
^hejsdMS at assizes* In 6ne instance 
a aaa had been tried for steaUng a 
peer ot timb^ in the oijAt time, and 
had been convicted. The sentence 
to be inflicted by the bw was trans* 
^ortatioo SoTMesfOBi yevs; but if tM 

judge had b^n compdled to insist on 
the infliction of that sentence under 
the peculiar circumstances of the caset 
it must have made his situation miser- 
able mdeed. T^e prisoner was a poor, 
but industrious tailor; every body 
bore testimony to his ^;ood character» 
even the prosecutor himself was con* 
strained to say tHit he believed him ta 
be the most industrious and excellent 
creature living. When called on far 
his defence, and to state why he had 
committed the theft, the poor maa 
said, * It is true that I stole the pieoe 
of timber as I was returning hone 
from my dub ; and I intfiwed to 
make sUxds of it for my poor, sick 
children.' Such was the feelinff of 
the judges after having heard au the 
heart«nmding circumstances, that he 
said to the prisoner, * 1 heme that 
your a|q>earance heie will be ot node* 
triment to you hereafter'-^t oagh( 
not to ho— 70U have suffered ranch 
slneady-^-go oome, and bless the hws 
which have enabled the judge to ea« 
ercise some discretion in your case U^ 
Gaoler, discharge the prisoner r««» 
What would have been the situatioa 
of the judge, had there been any wril- 
teo scale <3l law which must be apoli^ 
ed to this case ? Would not any fur t a cr 
puni^ment than this man haa already 
ceceivedhave beentoomuch{ The same 
occurrences often happened, yet there 
were instances in which it was advisa- 
ble for the security of society, to ex* 
ert the utmost rigour of the laar.— He 
covdd not but lament that the present 
noiotion had been brought forward^ 
y^ knowing the hioh and hooonnble 
vpiod of his learned mepd^ be felt coa- 
vtnoed that it had befn the result ol 
honest oonvictioo^ and not from a mere 
desire of making complaint. He meant 
not to impute any thiag like blame* 
HelamenMthat any such notion had 
been introduced into that House, for 
there were persons out of doors who 
night think that there was much 

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^ound fer complaint. His hon. and 
£arned friend had told theniy that he 
-verily bcliercd a recent occurrence 
would not have taken place, had the 
bill proposed by him succeeded, allu- 
ding to the conviction and subsequent 
petitioning of those persons who had 
•tokn a great quantity of silk on the 
river Thames. He, however, differed 
from his hon. and learned friend in 
mich an opinion. He admitted that 
it would be most cruel if the letter of 
our penal code were to be abided by 
in every instance, for there were many 
cases where to inflict the punishments 
prescribed by the statutes for the of- 
fence would be the most barbarous 
cruelty, yet there were many cases of 
» very different description. It was 
death to steal on a navigable river 
to the amount of 40s., and there were 
many cases where it would be acting 
mercifully by society to inflict the pu- 
nishment to the utmost letter of the 
law— -cases which developed regular 
plans and deep-laid conspiracies; 
which formed part of a series of de- 
predations that were carried on dafly 
mod niffhtly, to the af^parent disregard 
of all law. When the ringleaders in 
•uch violations of good order and law 
were caught, was it not right that they 
should l^ punished as examples, out 
of mercy to others, to deter tnem from 
comoiitting simHar offences ?«-Such 
then was the character of the case 
which had been idluded to. Ther^ 
were to be teea deep*l^id plots, and 
the effects of widely-eztended corrup- 
tion. Those who had the care of the 
property had been corrupted to aban- 
don their duty towards their masters, 
and the law by which they had been 
tried, had said that the offence was ca- 
pitaL They had been tried before as 
conscientious and as intelligent a judge 
as ever sat upon the bench (Mr fiaron 
Thompson.) After a patient trial, 
which lasted three dars, they had 
been convicted. On that 

the assistance was had of all the per- 
sons eminent in the law; and the 
learned recorder of London, as wtm 
customary, had laid a minute report 
of the case before the sovereign atr- 
thority. In the privy council every 
circumstance of so important a case 
was minutely canvassed ; and the an* 
xiety of the royal mind on all occa- 
sions to render judgment in inercy 
was well known. Indeed, the anxie- 
ty of the sovereign to save the life of 
tnat unfortunate criminal, on whom 
the sentence of death had been passed^ 
could only be known to thoae who 
had witnessed its effects, and it was 
difficult to communicate even a funt 
idea of that anxiety. He had heard 
the late recorder (Adams) speak with 
great delight and enthusiasm of the 
excessive anxiety of his majesty to 
save the lives of criminals ; and for 
that purpose he would repeatedly 
question as to the law and the circum- 
stances of the case, and aU in favour 
of the criminal. But what was to be 
done, when a desperate gang were 
brought before the tribunal ofjustice 
to answer to the violated laws of their 
country ? Was there no difference be- 
tween the measure of their guilt^.- 
betwixt their culpability and thai of 
an individual who might have com^ 
mitted a similar offence for the first 
time, from absolute poverty, and 
vrithout having been in concert with 
any one? But it was said, respect- 
ing the robbery on the Thames, that 
the jury had afterwards petitioned 
his royal highness the Prince Re- 
gent for a nutigation of the punish- 
ment—a proof of their notion of its 
unnecessary severity. Some of the 
criminals had families— others wives 
-«and others fathers or mothers de- 
pendent on them for bread. No man 
had a higher veneration for the trial 
by jury than he had, and for thoae 
who composed the juries of this coua< 
try. Few men had seen more of the 

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Mceediogt b crinuBil coorts than he 
y ; botafterthiity years' experieoce» 
b had lot known six instances where^ 
M he been of the jury^ he should not 
kfe felt himself bound to detennine 
pROiely ai the jury had detennined. 
But ma they had brought in their 
verdict, thejr were like other men, ac- 
ceniUe to pity. The doors of the ju- 
rynen might afterwards be crowded 
by the dnighters» the sons» or the 
onthert of thpse who had been convict- 
ed, mtfing their inter£erence» They 
loud adnut the justice of th^ convic- 
tios, they would acknowledge the of- 
bee of their relati? cs ; but they 
would add— *« you cannot wish them 
to qipiate theb crimes with their 
Eves— you cannot desire that they 
ihould be hanged ; thank, then, on our 
Miogt for those who, we beUeroi may 
be saved if yon wOl petition the Prince 
Regent. Yon will not refuse to siffn 
this p^er— life is valuable to the 
BKSoest faeiog that crawls l" Thank 
God! few Englishmen could with- 
ttiodtochanappealasthisl Thepe- 
tition was rign«i under t}i«se circum* 
tttactty and was forwarded to the foun- 
t&n of merqrt where it would always 
^ doe effect if a fair case were made 
ouu-While assttting the judges of 
Mile it was once unfortunately his 
^ to pass sentence of death on nx 
^^Mods, some of whom he could 
fiot leave br execution, and of course 
^ rash order was left. But such 
t^cfingi of mercy as he had in his own 
^ towards the unhappy individuals 
^^ not be conomunioited to them. 
^ consequence was, when he was 
'W to leave the town the carriage 
*)ieds were beset ; and there were loud 
ptycn calling on him ** for God's 
^Qot to leave the criminals for exe« 
cutioa!»» Those who were offering 
^ tie petitions s^ fervently were ac- 
twfly the prosecutors j and they ad- 
°>ttted the iustice of the sentence, but 
Aid that tne poor men^s Uves ought 

to be spared— ibr life was valuable. 
Such had ever been the case, and if 
the judges were not so to run a rate of 
hunumity with the prosecutors, their 
carriage wheds would be so obstruct- 
ed that they would be unable to move. 
It had the happiest effects, it commu- 
nicated mercy to those who merited it, 
while the law was to be called into ac- 
tion against greater offenders. The 
severity of the law was not too much 
for some cases ; for the utmost rigour 
was sometimes called for out of mercy 
to society. He should not detain the 
House longer on the present occasion | 
he had now addressed them for the sole 
purpose of doing awavthat pr^udidal 
uipression which naight be made on the 
public mind, had tte sutement of Sir 
S. Romilly gone forth to the world 
without some observations being made 
upon it." 

On the d6th of March, when the 
third reading of the bill was proposed. 
Sir S. Komuly entered upon a review 
of the objections which had been stai ed 
to the measure. <« To those members," 
he said, *< whohad not before heard him 
en this subject, it would afford satisfac- 
tion to hear that his was not theory ; and 
though the gentlemen who opposed the 
present bill obliged him by oestowing 
on him the appellation ot a theorist, 
they themselves were in reality the 
theorists. It would be some relief to 
those who objected to him, that he 
was accustomid to indulge in fanci- 
ful theovies, when he assured them that 
he would now cautiously abstain from 
obtn^inj^ on their attention anything 
of that kind ; at the same time he could 
not help observing, that this charge, so 
frequently prefemd against him, was 
by no means well foun£d $ on the con* 
trary, he had the satis&ction of think* 
ing that those who were most forward 
in accusinflr him, were themsdves ad- 
^ted to the practice theyr condemned. 
He really was not conscious that he 
h»d attempted to support any measurea 

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iOoh U thpw which formed the object 
of the present bill by theoretical arga* 
meats i he had always, in endeavour* 
ing to recommend thiem to the Hotisoi 
t&d principally on facts, and he had 
very diligently laboured to pot the 
House in possession of those hcU. 
These practical men, as they would 
ha¥e themselves supposed, however, 
who resisted the fafll, had brought fbrw 
ward no hucu in support of their opi* 
nions. They disdained even to have 
xecourse to toose facts bearing on the 
•ubject which they had before them* 
He wat sorry not to have heard the 
sentiments of his honourable and learn* 
fed bmd (the Scdicitor General) of 
this measure, considering how gratify- 
iqg it must have been to the House tp 
leani the opinion of a learned gentle^ 
nan of his gruat experience on the sub- 
ject.— The simple question now. at ia- 
aoe was, whether alaw, enacted in the 
Deim of William IIL, which made 
vaSbtrr to the amount of more than 
five shillings, without any aggravated 
dncumttances, a capital offence, should 
nmaitt on the statute booiL» Without 
atallnUudingtotheohangea procurtd 
by lapseof time^andeven to the change 
i»the opinion of tha judges since the 
tfaw of Ainff William, an honourable 
SBuLleamad £iend of hi^ (Mr Wethe* 
taU) called o» the House to adhene to 
the ancient system of our crinanal law, 
and for informntion oa^ that head re- 
&md them to a work of Dr Faity. 
This^ howevei^ was a work not found- 
ed on aaeaqidry into th» ancient ays* 
tem of our cnannal law, but into the 
ttttureoftfaat law as it had been prac« 
tisedjn modem times. Now, he would 
remind the Hbqpe,that far iscoosidenu 
Ue time the jnd^ had, without beiag 
chai^ged with uidolgin^ in theories, 
aeea occasion to swerve » their pne* 
tice from the spirit of lespislative en- 
actasent t a spint, which, by thoway, 
had not been alwaya donnant, aa tte 
punishment in qimtioorhad bean in* 

lioCed tai withb the reign of h 
preaent maiesly; and the freoueoc 
with which it had been inMcto 
could be ascertained fpom Howard 
book on prisons. From this it appesi 
ed, that itom the year 1749 to 1771 tl 
number tried was 200, of whom 10! 
or nearly one half, werv oonviote< 
Within the last five years, on the ocb 
hand, in London alone, there had bc< 
toedibr similar offences 10§, of who( 
were convicted only 18, being Ofdr OS 
in ten of those indicted, and of toe 1 
convicted not one had been cseoste 
Now, he asked how the disparity bi 
twcen the mtmber tried and the mm 
ber convicted was to be accounted 4b 
on any other principle but the unwi 
tiagoesa of the jiirr to find the ^rope 

astolen to be of tne vafaie re^purea b 
lact }^ He ashed> could any ftroni 
erargument agaioat an existing hw { 

conceivtd, than that crimes not onl 
inoreased but multiplied under it I G 
could ^ny-thinff be more absurd tha 
that the punimnent of 'death shoal 
continue to be held out as appiicab] 
to oftnoes of a trivial nature when i 
waa perfeedy well known tliat sue 
ponisliment would never be inflicted 
It was said that the bill repealing th 
capital part of the punishment for pr 
vately stealmg from the person ha 
had theefect of iacreasingthat crinu 
He denied that that crime hadiilcresu 
ed sbce the passmg of the aetTepeal 
Ing thecapital part of the punishment 
but if the fact was §Of it renuiBed ti 
be riiewn- that the alterafcion in tb 
law had been the cause of it* For i 
crime in general had bcreaaed, it wool 
be rather too much to hold that tb 
increase of it in thia particular instanc 
had been caused by the akeratioD ii 
thelaw. The increase of crime in ge 
neral would be apparent from the re 
turns before the Housei and cottUwitl 
fintvesa be attributed in a great de 
greev only to the uncertabty of tb 
or rather to the ceitatttt] 

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fiv the olEMce would be ioAict- 
IWwiKile f mimitf !■ » tlie ywr 
.tiuoQglioiit tbekiagdcwni for pf- 
^«Ctliit kindtUKNiiiUd to98(i— 
li06w»O— «a 1807 to 1017— in 
tm lilO— «n ISIi to 19«d— «ad 
ISUtoMM. So that k thoee six 
ifce f oimiiit rail had ingrmcd up* 
dSOOm Nowf m order to ace 
#at ahcMKXMi Itad beta effcctcdy it 
WMaenwy to enquire what number 
if fenoaa httd been csecntod Cmt tboae 
cnwa Moe cIm lateat of tbe perioda 
aaatiasad. Tbeve bad not been one. 
—fit bad boeB eocoaad of ringing tbe 
dbaiyaee aniprenir^Mf theonei» but 
fca h& sever dedt in tWoriea } be bad 
be Honae with &cta— be 
on factat plain demonatn^ 
tNt &cta I bat aoieatbing irery much 
Vkm tbffery bid bean arrafed againat 
^ titt let of 1809 bad pro- 
^y wiaka. A noble and 
{JElkaborpuf bl was r^ 
CO have aaid» that t£ alteration 
aa M piitttfeelf stealing from 
I bad ctuaed an bcreaseof 
I bet be denied that tbe 
tbe number of con« 
Cor that offence proved tbe u« 
, aa tbe inocnie migfat be attri- 
le u» tbe inereaae (tf crime in ge- 
aalaiaot4> tbe factt that siaea 
fciar i i ia ia tbe law» partita were 
iiaf Bniid to proatcute, Tbeopi* 
ef tbe JLord CUef Juatice bad 
ebea icfeired to, but that em^ 
pciaos bad dedarcd tbe same opi- 
tbaa tbe crime bad iacreased in 
^beSaectbepasmgoftbeaa. He 
why tbe aathority of tbe 
ice ibaald be singled 
to efiny other. He 
try aa malqr criminal causes as 
s judges I nor was it possible 
jmdge ofieially to ascertain 
tbe crime bad really iacrtaaed 
Tbe Buartii of prosecutioas 
k wte casf to asoertaia» 

not tbe number of offences ; and that 
the number of prosecutions woidd be 
greater in proportion to tbe number of 
offeaoesy was what had been foreseen 
and foret<^d as the coniequence of 
pasnug this act. In 1605 there were 
23 persons indicted for this o&ncet 
and only one convicted | and in 1806f 
$1 persons tried, and one cobficted | 
in tne next year, 87 indicted, and three 
convicted | and in 1808, from January 
till June, when the capital part of the 
punishment was abolished, there were 
81 persons indicted for steaUng pri* 
vateiy firom the person. Such was tbe 
progressive increase of this crime be* 
tore his bill had passed, although the 
increase had been considered as the ef» 
£ect of the pasring of that bill. So 
little attention did uese gentlemen who 
talked against theory par to facts. 
They were so taken up witn their zed 
ibout practical men, and the |^t su» 
periority of experience over specula* 
tion, that they never once condescend* 
ed to look at the returns laid upon 
the table. — ^As to the terror held out 
by these unexecuted punishments, on 
which so much stress had been kid, it 
was purely chimerical,—- they had no 
effect. Liet the House for a m o me n t 
remember bow vast a diflb^ce thei^ 
was between the great number of in- 
dictments and the small number of oon« 
victians which formerly took place, 
aad the nearer proportion b e t we en the 
convictions and indictmenU which waa 
BOW observed. The fact was, that 
juries were not to be found who woidd 
find guilty on such sanguinary laws. 
Before the passing of the former biU^ 
withm a specific period 80 were fiW 
dieted, but only one was found guilty ; 
and after the bill becaaie a law, withm 
the saaie period 89 were indicted, and 
45 out of that number were convict* 
ed. Tbe reason of this evidently was, 
that the law being less sanguinary, tbe 
juries did not hentate to convict men 
when evidence had proved them to be 

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ipiiky. To keep these sangninaiy 
acts standing on the statute-b^ks, as 
threats, was much worse than useless ; 
for they in effect often prevented men 
from being convicted when they really 
were guilty. Many instances could be 
adduced to shew, that in consequence 
of the laws regarding some particalar 
offences being so very sanguinary, men 
who had been guilty of those offences, 
even in an aggravated degree, were 
not even proceeded against. This ap- 
plied particularly to bankrupts* How 
many bankrupts have been guilty of 
those offences which the law made ^• 
nishable with death, such as secre- 
ting their property, and not appearing 
to their commission, and yet were ne- 
ver proceeded against, such was the 
terrible severity of the law ? Its terri- 
ble severity was such, that no one 
could be found to prosecute, for there 
were but very few creditors who cauld 
ever think of proceeding against a 
bankrupt, however deeply that bank- 
rupt might have injured them, when 
tuch proceeding was to endanger the 
man's life. Though those offences 
were extremely common, as must be 
well known to those who had any 
thing to do with bankruptcies, yet had 
there only been fsur prosecuted within 
half a century ! Bat was it surprising 
that such a law remained a mere -dead 
letter on the statute-book i If those 
* offences were punishable by transport- 
ation, or by imprisonment for a term 
of years, would not many bankrupts 
be justly prosecuted for secreting their 
property from their creditors, or for 
net appearing to the commission i 
Where then was the boasted benefit 
resulting from holding out tit ierrarem 
what was not carried into execution ? 
Men who referred to facts, who did 
not indulge in theories, were well con- 
vinced of this. Some gentlemen Were 
fond of facts, and he would appeal, by 
way of illustration, to an instance given 
by a respectable traveller, Barrow, in 

his account of the Cape of Go^d 
Hope. When he arriv^ there, tlm« 
kw still ordered breaking on the whc^l 
and torture for certain o&nces ; and 
when it was proposed to reped thos« 
laws, all the lawyers exclaimed loddl^ 
agunst the repeal; they said, thm^ 
though never put in force, these ptz*- 
nishments were necessary in terrorefpm^ 
and that simple strangling with a cord 
would not have any effect. The judg^ev 
were of the same opinion. Tlie himrm 
were however repealed, and the conse^ 
quence was, that an appUcatfon wmm 
soon afterwards made by the hangmaix 
to have a pension assigned htm, ao^ 
owine to the diminution of the num- 
ber of criminals, his place was become^ 
worth nothing to him. Stranglingr^ 
putting on the rack, and beheiKlin^^ 
were punishments which were still en. 
forced there by the letter of the lawr« 
The statesmen saw that they were 
never enforced, in fact, and that the 
continuance of the law was detriment 
tal rather than otherwise. They ap- 
plied for the repeal of them ; but tne 
continuation of the laws was defeade<d 
on the ground of their being valuable 
as « terror. They were repealed, aad 
the consequence was, that the poor 
executioner petitioned the government 
for a pension, offering, at the same 
time, to give up his fm of office !— — 
With respect to the authority of the 
judges in favour of the present law. It 
should be remembered that' till 1771 
they had executed that law, and their 
present practice was an innovation on 
the law, which was no longer any 
thing more than a mere theory. A 
learned Serjeant (Best) had said, that 
if any case could be found in which 
the sentence ought to be etecuted^ 
this would be a sufficient justification 
of the law. But he would suppose a 
case of assault so agmvated as to de- 
serve a capital punishment ; as for in* 
stance, if^a son ehould cruelly and 
wantonly assault a kind and roost in«. 

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tigot ktheff was the honourable 
aibrned geotkmany therefore, pre- 
pnd to ttjt that he would make an 
Mok opita] in all cases whatever ? 
Ifio,k mast bring in an entirely new 
odeofUm, and he would advise the 
Innied Kneant to inscribe them with 
tkeoaaeM Draco. The learned mem- 
ber kad quoted the mazimy Nolumm, 
l^ Aagim mtiari. But he must 
K§ Jnfe to remind him when and 
km dioie words were applied. They 
*«e Qied by the baitms when they 
naed the attempt to overturn the 
■Ue ^8tem of - our laws, and to in** 
^niuat tbe old Roman for the com- 
BOQ hv of tbe land. If they were to 
beqsoced sgamst all alterations in the 
oitiiig lai^» why then the learned 
njeiBt woold have appealed to them 
*tt9 it was first proposed^ in the time 
of QnecB Aoney to have witnesses 
mmMd in favour of the prisoner ; or 
rhen k was proposed to extend the 
Miefit of dergf to women as well as 
les ; or when it wat determined to . 
Snegaid clerical accomplishments, 
Hni were so kng the criterion that 
Handed capital punishment in cer- 
^ casei. Sncb must have been the 
'ectofi^plyiogthe learned serjeant^s 
■KioBS during all tin»es.— With re- 
^ to the sentence of death, it had 
>KQ aid that there were * different 
^ of pronouncing it,— one way 
^ the criminal was really to be 

Si, and another when it was in- 
tlHt he should be respited. But 
le bev nothing of these < different 
^* of pronouncing a sentence of 
Wk; for if there were any such 
Pi^OBtf the pronouncing of the sen- 

tence must lose much of its efficacy. 
He knew oF but one way ; and as the 
prisoner remained ignorant of any in- 
tention to lessen his punishment, the 
pronouncing of the sentence must have 
all the effect it would have if the sen- 
tence were really to be inforced* The 
only form he knew of, was that where 
the judge concluded with solemnly 
pronouncing, * And the Lord have 
merqr on your soul !' He had wit- 
nessed the awful effects which the de- 
livery of this sentence had on the cri- 
minais ; and in some instances, where 
it was the intention not to execute, he. 
had seen the judge, after the sentence 
had been pronounced, send to the pri- 
soners, such wa« their dangerous 8tate» 
to assure them that the sentence was 
not to be executed ! What benefit 
could result from, such a proceeding ? 
and what advantages resulted from 
placing a judge in such situations f 
He was for reducing the theory to 
the practice of the law, and for enact- ■ 
ing such punishments for offences as 
were not of that sanguinary character , 
which would induce juries to acij^uit , 
altogether, even where some punish- . 
ment was due« He would conclude . 
in the words of the Master of the* 
Rolls, whose absence he deeply re- 
gretted,— that when the law was such 
as to be no longer executed, from its , 
repugnance to the manners and senti- 
ments of the community, the time was 
come to repeal that law, and to sub^ 
stitute another for it, more mild and 
more effectual.'* 

The bill passed the House of Com- 
mons by a considerable majority. 

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Siniektk Affktrs cmUmied.'-^Stiae of the Finanea^i^Mr FansiHarPs neft» 
Ptnn tf Finance^^^ObjeetioM urgeaagainsi U^^^Army Esdmatet.^^En^uk 
and Inih Budgets* 

TlliB sufe 6f the financet of this 
country may well etcite aatonhhnieDt. 
The prodipous amount of the pub- 
lic deDt» the magnitude of the loans 
which in a aeaton of war are annu- 
aHy contracted) the tariety of the 
tctei ibpoged, and the entire confi- 
dcnce which, aotwithatanding all these 
circumstancesy is sdll reposed in the 
national credit, appear to set at defi* 
smce an thie sufgestioni of theory. 
The extent and ^rtility of the resour* 
ces of the cototry, and the scrupu* 
lotis fidelity of the government in the 
discharge of its pecuniary obligations^ 
can alone account for these smgular 
phenomena. Yet as the means of taz- 
mtiouy although extensive^ are in their 
nature not inexhaustible^ while the ex* 
penditure seems to be altoeether with- 
out limits, it is obvious that without 
•ome vigorous effort to maintain a due 
INToportion, ultimate embarrassment 
nnst be the result of the present sys- 

To arrange and methodise the pub- 
fie income and expendtture»<^to miti- 
gmte in some degree the burdens of a 
period exposed to unusual difficul- 
tiesr— to arrest unnecessary profusion 
in the puMicbnsineMi- and to raiae a 

given sum with the least possible se- 
verity on those who are to pay, a #iao 
system of finance may do much ; but 
as an instrument for arresting the pro- 
gress of continued extravagance to 
certain ruin,—- of wasteful expenditure 
to national bankruptcr,— and of ex- 
cessive taxation to the discount^* 
ment and ultimate destruction of tn- 
dnstry, all such systems seem to be iM- 

The nation which has recourse to 
the funding system, without making 
any provision for retracing its stepa, 
and tor recovering in a period of repose 
from the difitculties into which it mny 
have been led durmg a season of wnr, 
must look forwara to insolvency ns 
the inevitable consequence. Grent 
Britain has, on almost every emer* 
gency, resorted to the funding system 
since the Revolution. A weak snd 
timid minister will be partial to this 
system, and will rashly increase thnt 
burden^ which can be removed only 
by his more resolute successors. At 
toe close of the American war this 
system had been carried to a great 
extent, without the provision of ade* 

2uate means for arrestine its progress, 
t was reserved for the virtue sad 

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tibttof Mr Pitt to provide the i^ 

Tm fondamental principle of Mr 
Mi system waft developed in the 
Kir arrangements with regard to the 
liking fgind. His plan was, to sepa* 
nte it completely from the other de- 
paaitBKitsof expenditure, and to place 
n nsderthe contibul of commissioners, 
i^nsoBoUe not to ministers, but to 
panaaeDt He provided dso that 
^ hsA iboold operate in war as well 
a in peace; that while new debts were 
cootncted, the sinking fund should 
pty off the old ; and that, at the pe- 
riod of eferjr new loan, taxes beyond 
what miriit be necessary to pay the 
Interest should be imposed, and form 
tt additioD to the sinkine fund. 

It has been thought by some per- 
iQDSi that the only mode of discnar- 
giDg the natwnal debt, is by obtain- 
ing a surplus of levenue beyond the 
expeodttore ; that the separation of 
thesioJuD^ fimd from the other funds 
■ in peace a measure of no real effi- 
cacy ; that in irar it is equally una- 
^Agf and must for ever ht attended 
^ toss, because it!increases the sums 
^3^ by loan, and upon which the 
persoes Who make th(i advance must 
fwdft a profit. It would therefore, 
it has been said, be far better that any 
tnrplM which may arise during peace, 
^^^oiU he employed in defraying the 
expences of the war, and in ie$sening 
llie amonnt of the loans.— Those who 
»gse this forget, however, that in 
^ actual conduct of the finances 
""■cthiDg aK>re is to be considered 
^ the mere science of calculation ; 
^ that it is our duty to appretiate 
^ not only the nature of the affairs 
*^*«5Md?es, but the character of the 
^ hy whom they are to be admi- 
BKteitd ; not only what can, but what 
^ be done. It may be laid down as 
1 fixed principle, tmit every minister 
^ mt some object, in which it 
»o»M be convenient an^ agreeable to 

'W- VI. PART u 

spend any surplus of the public mo- 
ney. If then this surplus be left float- 
ing smd mixed with other funds, the 
resuh will be, that an immediate and 
desirable use of it vnll be preferred to 
one which, though great, is distant, 
and therefore uninteresting. This is 
no vague theory ; it has been confirm- 
ed by the experieoce of Great Britain 
for the last century. The influence of 
every sinking fund prior to that of Mr 
Pitt, thougn operating in the most 
favourable circumstances, and during 
long periods of peace, has been ut- 
terly insignificant. — It may be said, 
indeed, that although a sinking fund 
is expedient in time of peace, yet 
during war there can be no motive 
for its adoption. But those who rea- 
son in this manner ought to reflect on 
the temptation which would arise in 
a time of war to apply the sxtrplus of 
the sinking fund to pay the rattrest 
of loans, instead of diminishing their 
amount ; thus avoiding, for the time, 
that discontent which the imposition 
of new taxes inevitably creates. E- 
ven when peace arrives, the winding 
up of the -concerns of war occasions 
much extraordinary expence, to which 
this existing surplus might be most 
conveniently applied. For these rea- 
sons, a sinking fund may be consi- 
dered as a necessary appendage to 
the funding system ; it ought to be 
separated as completely as pos9ible 
from all other funds, and to be guard- 
ed by thestronffest barriers. It ought 
to operate at ail times by its own in* 
trinsK force, and not according to the 
varying and capricious views of states- 

Another important change accom- 
plished by Mr Pitt, was the introduc- 
tion of the practice of raising the 
greater part of the supplies withm the 
year. The sinking fund, adhered to 
with the characteristic firmness of the 
minister who established it, might have 
been sufficient for supporting the m- 

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tkm under wan of coouBOD magnknde 
and common duntion | but a war 
conducted on a scale exceeding all 
former experience^ and of which the 
termination appeared wholly uncer* 
tain, was found to require some more 
vigorous measure; the accumulation 
of debt became too greats and the 
prospect of its discharge too distant ; 
and provision was now to be made 
for carrying it on to an indefinite 
term. These purposes could only be 
answered by war-taxes* which, by de- 
fraying part of the extraordinary ex- 
penditure, ought diminish the amount 
of the annual loans* Such a plan in* 
deed* to a certain extent* is* in all 
cases* highly expedient* Yet it re- 
quired* perhaps* the decisive and com- 
manding character of Mr Pitt to force 
upon the nation so ungrateful a reme- 
dy. This remedy was administered 
also in the roost unpoptdar of modes-^ 
that of direct contribution. After in- 
effectual attempts to arrive at income 
through the medium of assessed taxes* 
the direct and offensive form of an 
income-tax was at length adopted* and 
submitted to by the nation. A variety 
of exemptions and allowances vrare at 
first admitted* with the view of miti- 
gating its pressure ; but as the nation 
became inured to the burden* it was 
gradually rendered more severe and 
more productive. Lar^e war-taxes 
were afterwards imposed upon wine* 
spirits* and tea*^ and other articles of 
general consumption ; which* with the 
income-tax* raised the whole produce 
to upwards of twenty millions* and* 
joined to the permanent taxes* formed 
the enormous annual contribution of 
between sixty and seventy millions. 
No such burden had ever before been 
endured by any country in any age. 

The. administration which succeed* 
ed to power on the death of Mr 
Pitt* eitner from an apprehension that 
the limits of taxation had been ap- 
proached* or from a desire to innovate 
as much as possible; on the plans of 

their great predecessor* ooce more at* 
tempted to revive the funding system 
to a large extent. The obtect which 
they proposed was, that the war* of 
whose termination there was no pros- 
pect* might be continued indefinitely 
without any considerable increase of 
taxation. The war-taxes* exclusively 
of that on income* were to be appUed 
to pay the interest of the annual loan. 
They were also to furnish a sinking 
fund of 5 per cent, which* at the end 
of fourteen years* wonld extinguish 
the debt* and leave the revenue dis- 
poseable* to provide for a^aew loan. 
This diversion of the war-taxes from 
their original object necessarily occa- 
sioned an annual deficiency, to be com* 
pensated by a supplementary loan* in- 
creasing every year till it amounted to 
a sum equal to the whole of these tax- 
es. The interest on the supplemen- 
tary loans was to be chiefly defrayed, 
1st* by the falling in of annuities^ 
8d* by stopping the accumulation o( 
the sinking fund, after its amount 
should have equalled the interest on 
the redeemed debt | an event which 
was expected to take place about the 
year 1817. — This plan manifestly in- 
volved a recurrence to the funding sys* 
tern, and a revival of it in the most 
obnoxious shape which it could as* 
sume ; for, not only were new loans tc 
be contracted for the public service 
but even to pay the inters of the pub^^ 
lie debt. 

The ministers, by whom these ar 
rangements had been made, were sooj 
removed from power* and their plsd 
was supplied by their political advei 
saries. The pun was therefore aba^ 
doned* and the new ministers set o^ 
upon the principle of preserving entid 
the war taxes* and consequently i 
providing for every successive loan U 
new impositions. But they soon foui 
that this was a task which they po^ 
sessed no adequate means of perfor^ 
ing; that taxation was rapidly U 
proaching that tern? when an incrcai 

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tf the rate difflifiithef instead of in- 
creaang the produce. This tendency 
was accelerated bj the expenset » ]udi- 
doos and ultimatelj economical, which 
were occaaiooed by the great scale of 
the war in the peninsula. It was in- 
creaaed still more by the stagnation of 
trader occanoned by (he shutting of 
an the continental ports. In short, 
after aereral temporary expedients had 
been tried* the chancellor of the ex- 
Atqaer, Mr Vansittart» became sen- 
t&le that recourse must be had to 
measures of a different and more deci- . 
Sffe character. 

On the Sd of March, in the present 
year, Mr Vansittart explained his new 
plan to the committee of the whole 
house appointed to enquire into the 
finances of the country. Besides some 
propontiona of minor importance, as 
to ttie redemption of the land-tax, and 
an a4toum to the sum appropriated 
to the sinking fond on each new loan, 
Mr Vansittart proposed an important 
change, the nature of which may be 
explained in a few words. By the ori- 
ginal constitution of the sinkmg fund, 
tkut stock purchased br the commis- 
fioners was not cancellea, but was con- 
sidered still to be the property of these 
commissioners, who regularly drew the 
interest, and applied it to the further 
discharge of the national debt. It was 
in this manner that the fund accumu- 
lated by compound interest ; a circum- 
stance on which so much reliance was 
placed. This arrangement was now 
abolished, and the whole stock pur- 
chased by the commissioners (which 

sinking fund, a new fund of f| instead 
of 1 per cent, should be proTided for 
that surplus. 

Mr Yansittart made the following 
remarks in support of this proposition : 
** I beff leave to preface my explanac 
tion of the system I am ahout to re- 
commend, by a few general remarks 
on the redemption of public debt. We 
are apt to consider this subject (if I 
mar so express myself) too arithmeti- 
cally ; we compute that a certain an- 
nual sum will, at compound interest, 
redeem a given amount of debt within 
a certain number of years, but we for- 
get the great considerations of policy 
and pubhc econo m y which this opera- 
tion inToWes* We do not consider 
that it disposes of the fortunes of thou- 
sands of mdividuals ; that it requires 
the transfer of a mass of property, 
amounting peibaps to a fifth part of 
the whole capital of the country, if 
estimated according to the returns to 
the property tax, mm an employment 
in which it has been vested by the 
proprietors to the manifest advantage 
of the public, into other modes of oc- 
cupation. It is an experiment which, 
as far as my knowledge extends, has 
never been tried on a great scale. The 
present Elector of Saxonr, it is true> 
discharged the debt ^hich his prede- 
cessors had accumulate^ upon that 
country | but neither t^e amoii^nt of 
the sum, nor the circunastances of the 
electorate of Saxony, can fqri^ any 
precedent for this wealthy and ppif er* 
fill kingdom. While war continue!, 
and loans are annually contracted ex- 

csased oj tne commissioners f wnicn ana loans are annuauy contracted ex- 
lappenea to be 286,000,000^ the pre- ceedinff the. amount of tfae sinipng 

> amount of the debt when the nind 
was instituted) was to be cancelled, 
and the interest to become disposable 
{or current services, or for paying the 
interest of new loans. An addition of 
^fiSSl. was at the same time to be 
made to the sinking fund. It was also 
propoaedt that when the loans should 
m any year exceed the amount of the 

fund, that amount, however great, cap 
only be considered as aa advantage ; 
but whenever peace may take place, 
it will soon be found that there is si 
point beyond which the annual ret 
demption of debt cannot be carried 
without great public inconvenience. 
This is no new argument in the House | 
my noble friend tne Marquis of Laas- 

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dow^ne urged it with great force and 
eloquence in opening his plan of fi* 
nance in 1807. He observed that the 
mischief pf an excessiTe sinking fund 
overloading the money market with ^ 
superabundance of capital, exceeding 
the means of employment, would be 
not inferior, and somewhat similar* to 
that of a national bankruptcy. When- 
ever, therefore, the sinking fund has 
reached that point beyond which it 
cannot be employed with advantage in 
time of peace, it seems to be wise to 
ithink oFsetting bounds \o its further 
accumulation, and certainly unwise to 
exhaust the national resources by an 
augmentation of taxes for its further 
increase. Whether the sinking fund 
has now reached that point it be* 
longs not to me to decide, and I y^ ish 
the most cautious and deliberate wis- 
dom of parliament to be applied to 
the decision. But it may unquestion- 
ably be said, that the sinking fund 
has now reached an extent of which 
the history of no country affords an 
example. In no country has the ex- 
periment of ah annual repayment of 
twelve millions, or any thing like it, 
been tried. This at least is obvious, 
that the present arrangements of the 
sinking fund require revision. As the 
law now stands it will accumulate to 
about tWrty, possibly to above forty 
millions, and will be at once reduced 
to twenty, or even to twelve. What- 
tver may be thought of the effects of 
its greatest amount, it is undeniable 
that such" a revulsion must be perni- 
cious. If the larger sum be not too 
great, the smaller must be far too little. 
Sut I perfectly agree with Lord Lans- 
downe, and all the great authorities 
which have treated of this subject, 
that the plan of employing thirty or 
forty millions in the purchase of stock 
in the time of peace is perfectly im- 
practicable and visionary. A change 
must therefore be made at some time ; 
and if so, is it not wiser to make it 

while the inconvenience is still at a 
distance, than when ii is actually press- 
ing, and when any cprrective may be 
opposed with an appearance of justice^ 
by the individual mterests which may 
be affected by it at the moment ? On 
this accoi^nt, I think it becomes the 
House now to pause, and take a de- 
liberate view of the situation of the 
country with respect to the repayment 
of its debt. But other circumstances 
concur to point out the present as a 
proper time for some revision of our 
system. By the original Sinkingr 
Fund Act of 1786, provision had been 
made, that when the fund should have 
accumulated to the amount of fpar 
millions per annum, its further accu- 
mulation should cease, and the sums 
purchased from that time be dischar- 
ged and fnade applicable to the public 
service. Had not that plan been varied 
by the act of l602, the public would 
before this time have received relief 
from the' operation of the sinking 
fund, though only to the limited ex- 
tent of the interest of four millions a- 
year ; for the calculations which were 
made of its progress fixed the period 
at which it would have reached its 
highest amount about the year 181S» 
and the average rate of mterest at 
which its operations have been con- 
ducted, proves in fact that it would 
before this time have accomplished 
that object. It seems natural to look 
for some relief from the sinking fund 
at the period at which it would' ac- 
tually have been obtained, if the con- 
stitution of the fund had not been va- 
ried. But there is another circum- 
stance still more striking in our present 
situation. When the sinking fund 
was established in 1786, the total a- 
mount of debt was about 240 mil- 
lions, and the redemption of such a 
sum appeared, if not utterly hopeless, 
at least placed at a very remote dis- 
tance. But great as the difficulty then 
appearedy Uie firmness and peraeve- 

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Ohap. 8.] 



niice of the nation» pursuiog thid im- 
portant object with undeviatfng steadi* 
ness, have at length completely sur* 
moiuited it ; and I. have the pleasure 
to refer the committee to accounts 
upon tbetr table, which prove that a 
turn equal to the total capital of the 
debt existing in 1786 haft been re- 
deemed. I mean, that the sums pur- 
dttsed by the comndssioners, or trans- 
ferred to th^nif exceed the amouat of 
the debt existing in 1786 ; for this is 
the only mode m which the redemp- 
tion of the old ^ebt can ever be ascer- 
tained, the new loans having been 
contracted in old funds, and no dis- 
tinction kept up between the earher 
and later creditors of the public. If 
any further circumstance coulii ' be 
wanting to prove that the people of 
this country have at the present time 
tlie furesl Utle to any relief which can 
be afforded, consistently with the ex- 
act observance of public faith, and 
doe attention to permanent security, 
it win be found in the extraordinary 
ciKrtions they have made to prevent 
the accumulation of public debt. In- 
stead of shifting tne burden from 
themsdves, and throwing it upon pos- 
terity, they have nobly and roantuUy 
supported the load of increasing difiB- 
ciutiea which the vicissitudes of this 
eventful contest have thrown upon 
them. To prevent the increase of 
public debt, they have actually paid 
upwards of 200 miUions in war taxes ; 
a sum which considerably exceeds the 
Tahie of the debt existing in 1786'. 
^he public have therefore a right to 
daim the merit of having doubly re- 
deemed the original debt ; first, by its 
actual repayment, and, secondly, bj 
the anticipated payment of a still greater 
sum which would otherwise have been 
added to it. But whatever claims the 
public may now have on these grounds 
for relief} and with whatever imme- 
diate advantage it might be attended, 
it becomes us more anxiously to en- 

Quire what are the dahns of public 
faith which ^i^e owe to the stock- 
holders, and v^hat the conditions on 
which the public debt has been con* 
tracted. The debt contracted pre- 
viously to 1792, was raised without 
any condition of repayment whatever* 
the govemnKnt bemg bound only to 
the Dunctual payment of the interest^ 
and left to consult its own discretion 
or convenience with respect to thef 
dischslrge of the principal. This debt^ 
however, I contend is now wholly dis- 
charged ; and that which now exis^a 
has been contracted since the passing 
of the act of 1792, ^nd suhject to its 

Erovisions. Under these the stpcki 
older has perhaps no real right, as 
he has voluntarily subscribed his stock 
into the old funds which have no con- 
ditions of redemption, but he has un- 
doubtedly a just expectation that th^ 
terms of redemption ppiated out in 
that act shau be adhered to. 

'< Those terms are, that provision 
shall be made for the repayment of the 
capital of all debts subsequently con- 
tracted, within 45 years from its crea- 
tion, either by the specific appropri^«> 
tion of one per cent, upon such capi- 
tal, or in any other mode which parlia- 
ment may think fit. That this is the 
true interpretation of the act, I afBrmr 
on the authority of the declarations 
and conduct of its illustrious author 
^Mr Pitt, and of t^e resolutions and 
acts of the legislature itself. Of Mr 
Pitt's sentiments I can mention a very ' 
remarkable instance. It must be ge^ 
herally recollected by those gentlemei^ 
who^ eleven years ago, were members.of 
the House, that Mr Pitt strongly supr 
ported the sinking fund act of 1802^ 
but it is not perhaps generally known 
that he was the origmal proposer o^ 
that act. I speak tnis from nny own , 
perfect knowledge, and there are other 
living witnesses, and I believe written 
documents in proof of it. The.agt 
originated in » su^estion o^ Mir 

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FHt to Lord Sidmouthy then chan- 
cellor of the Exchequer ; and his first 
suggestion went to this extent, that 
not only no sinking fund should be 
proTided upon the sums funded in that 
year^ but after reserving so much of 
the sinking fund as should be sufficient 
on calculation to redeem the whole 
debt at par within 45 years, the sur- 
plus, than amounting to abore a mil* 
UoD, should be appued to the public 
aenrice. After much discussion be- 
tween Mr Pitt and Lord Sidmouth, 
,it which I had the honour to assist, 
the proportion was reduced to the 
store limited form in which it receiv- 
ed the sanction of parliament. 

<* There could not be a more decisive 
declaration of Mr Pitt's opinion of the 
true construction of the act, and it was 
DO less dearlr shown by his public 
conduct on ottier occasions* In con- 
tracdne several loans in 1798, 1799, 
and 1800, on the credit of the income- 
tax, he made no provision for the im- 
mediate repayment of the principal, 
but proposea to discharge it by the 
continuance of the income-tax in time 
of peace, so long as might be neces- 
sary. This shews that he viewed the 
provision for repayment within 45 
years rather vnth regard to probabi- 
my and practice than to that extreme 
nicety and rigour which is sometimes 
insisted on ; for it was clearly possi- 
ble that the war might outlast 4^ 
years, and in that case no provision 
whatever would have been made for 
the redemption ; but Mr Pitt viewing 
the subject as a wise and great states- 
man, according to the probabilities of 
human affsirs, thought it sufficient to 
make such provision as any reasonable 
and practical man would think ade- 
quate to its purpose ; not looking to 
such cases as, thoueh mathematically 
true, approached tne extreme verge 
of possibility. 

** With respect to the resolutions of 
parliament, I shall beg leave to refer 

to the first of those passed by this 
House on the 18th of May 1802, and 
lately read at our table. On these 
resolutions an act was founded, which, 
as weQ as the acts which established 
the loans to which I have just refer- 
red, clearly evinces the opinion of the 
legislature, that the act of 1792 mere- 
ly required that provision should be 
made for the redemption of debt 
vrithin 45 years from its creation* 
leavinsr to the discretion of parlia* 
ment both the mode to be applied in 
specific cases, and any subsequent va- 
riation of that mode, which, within 
the limits prescribed, it may think 
propef to aaopt. 

** I shall now attempt to explain to 
the committee how it appears to me 
that some immediate relief may be 
afforded to the public, without the 
smallest infringement of the provi- 
sions of the act of 1799, which I 
have detailed. Neither the act of 
1786, nor that of 1792, contains anv> 
provision as to the mode in which 
the debt, when purchased, shall be 
cancelled or discharged, so as to re* 
lieve the charge upon the consolidated 
fund. There are two modes in which 
this might be carried into effect. The 
first would be, that, supposing any 
number of successive loans to be con-v 
tracted, a proportion of sinking fund 
should, acdbrding to the present prac- 
tice, be attached to each, and should 
continue to accumulate at compound 
interest until the whole of such loan 
should be discharged by iu exclu- 
sive operation, and thus that the re- 
demption of each should be sepa* 
rately and independently effected.*— > 
This is understood to be the mode 
established by law under the opera- 
tion of the act of 1792, in some de- 
gree varied by that of 1802, but re- 
maining in force as to all loans con- 
tractedsubsequently to the latter o£ 
those years. It is evident, however, 
that as the funds are interminglei 

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md coatolidated^ the stock crested 
ibr sny particular portum ef debt 
cannot be distio^shedy and-the pur* 
doKsareoMuleindiacrimiQately. Any 
•eparate loan can therefore no other- 
wise be redeemed than by purchasing, 
with the sinking fund attached to it, 
aa amoont of stock equal to that which 
was created in consequence of such a 

«< The other mode, which would 
hare been equally consonant to the spi« 
rit (^the act of 179% would have been 
to direct that the debt first contracted 
ihall be deemed to be first paid off, 
ad that the sinking fund created in 
re^>ect of iany subsrauent loan shall 
be first applied to toe discharge of 
any prior loan then remaining onre* 
daioaed, while the operation of the 
per ccntage created for those earlier 
loans should be continued for the re- 
demptioa of those subseouently con- 
tracted. By this means uie loan first 
contracted wonJd be discharged at an 
carfier period, and the funds chamd 
wkh the j^yment of its interest be« 
come appacaUe to the public service* 
Thus u the event of a long war, a 
considerable resource might accrue 
daring the course of the war itself, 
as every successive loan would contri- 
bute to acoekrate the redemption of 
those previously existing, and the to* 
tal anount of charge to be borne by 
the public in respect of the public 
debt, woidd be reduced to a narrower 
co mp a ss than in the other mode, in 
which a ^reat number of loans would 
be ca-ensdn?. At the same time the 
ahimatft discharge of the^ whole debt 
would be rather accelerated than re- 
tnded. Theadv anta ges of this mode 
of operation did not perhaps present 
dKBselves to Mr Pitt when madnr 
the arrangements of the sinking fund, 
IB the prospect of a continuance of 
peace, and with a very renx>te view of 
the ultimate redemption of the debt, 
nor would it have been easily made 

applicable to the lai^ mass then ex* 
isting, and for the redemption of which 
no provisk>n had before been made. 
But the circumstances of the present 
time afford a most advantaojeous op« 
portunity of establishing a plan which 
would in the first instance have beeu 
preferabki It is now only necessary 
to deckre that an amount of stocs 
equal to the whole of the debt ex* 
isting in 1786 has been redeemed, and 
that in like manner, whenever an a* 
mount of stock equal to the capital 
and charge of any loan raised since 
1792, shall be redeemed in iu proper 
order of succession, such loan snail be 
deemed and taken to be redeemed and 
satisfied. Every part of the system 
vrill then fall at once into iu proper 
place ; and we shall proceed with the 
future redemption with all the advan* 
tages whieh could have been derived 
from the original adoption of the nK>de 
of successive instead of simultaneout 
redemption. Instead of waiting till 
the purchase of the whole of the debt 
colisoUdated in 1802 shall be coai- 
pleted, that part of it which existed 
previously to 1792, will be considered 
as already redeemed, and the subse* 
qnent loains will follow in succession 
whenever equal portions of stock shall 
have been purchased. It is satisfac« 
tory to observe, that by a gradual and 
equable proGress we shall still have the 
power of effteting the complete re« 
payment of the debt more speedily 
than by the present course. I do not 
pronounce whether it will be wise to. 
persevere to that extent, it will be 
for parliament to judflre when the pro« 
per time arrives, which is yet at a con<* 
siderable distance ; but we are doing 
our duty to posterity not only scru* 
pulously but liberally, while we not 
only much more than satisfy the pro<« 
visions of the act of 1792, which re- 
quires the redemption of the debt 
within 45 years, but actually anticW 
pate that course of redemptioarwhid^ 

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is now prcnrided. The tables which 
will be put into the hands of gentle- 
metky wul shew them that means are 
provided by the proposed plan of 
efiFecting the total repayment of the 
existing debt from four to ten years, 
and that of the future debt which 
may be incurred, according to the 
various suppositions assumed, from 14* 
to 17 years, sooner than by the laws 
BOW in force. This statement is suffi- 
dent'to shew how amply the proposed 
plan is capable of satisfying the most 
saneuine expectations of the nation 
vmh respect to the final discharge of 
its debts, as well as the fair claims of 
those who look to the execution of the 
act of 1792, as the means of support- 
ing the value of the public funds. I 
have mentioned the result of such 
calculations as are intended to be com- 
municated to the House ; other cases 
may be supposed by which the result 
may^ be varied in degree, but not in 
general effect. 

** I have thus far attempted to ex- 
plain the intended system to the com* 
mittee, and to recommend it by its 
general and intrinsic advantages with- 
out displaying the immediate benefits 
of its adoption. Yet they are such 
as must be highly satisfactory to par* 
liament, and of the greatest impor- 
tance in the present situation of the 

<< Ttie immediate result of this sys- 
tem, simple as it may appeary and really 
is, will be equal to a subsidy of above 
one hundred millions* For four years 
to come, we may, on the supposition 
of the continuance of the war, hope to 
be obliged to impose no other taxes 
than such as are required to ftlmish 
those additions to the sinking fund 
which I pointed out in the early part 
of my statement. I need not dwell 
, upon the advantages of such a relief, 
I need not explain its effects in raising 
the spirits and animating the exer- 
tions of the nation. I need not en- 

large on the confidence it must giv<e 
to our allies, and the despondency ie 
is calculated to impress on our ene- 
mies. But that which in my yicvw 
renders it peculiarly valuable is> tha^ 
it is so hr irom being purchased by an^ 
accumulation of burdlens on the suc- 
ceeding years, that though its advan- 
tages may be very different in degree^ 
according to the different cases sup- 
posed, yet it will in all, for several 
years to oome^ produce a very consi- 
derable diminution of charge. 

** Such are the general principles of 
the plan to which I bee to call the 
most serious attention of the commit- 
tee, but not at present to preu for it» 
jud^ent. That it is free from ob- 
jections I cannot hope, but I trust 
that parliament vnll on mature consi- 
deration be convinced, as I am myself 
conscientiously persuaded, that they' 
are such as bear no proportion to ita^ 
advantages. I can at feast acquit my^ 
self of having hastily and rashly de- 
termined on a measure of this majg. 
nitude and importance. It has &v 
many months been the subject of my 
most anxious meditations, and of re- 
peated and detailed discussions witiv 
those whom I thought most capable 
of guiding my judgment ;• and I sub- 
mit it to the committee not without 
great anxiety, but with the confidence 
naturally fiowing froAi the most sinn 
cere conviction. 

** 1 am fully aware, that ih proposing, 
any change in a system so justly reve- 
reo, and considered as the brmest hope 
of the nation^ I am incurring a great 
responsibility, but I also feel that I 
ought not to ^rink from it, in the 
prospect of performing a gpreat puhhc* 
service. Many a gallant and worthy 
man has laid down his life to atcbieve 
a much less important service to hia 
country, than that of providing at 
such a moment the supphes necessary, 
during four years, for the contest in 
which we are engaged^ In the hope 

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flf proconn^ thii benefit to the pub- 
Ik:, I am wuling to riik what many, 
to whom life is dearer than it is to 
Be* famve yalued beyond their lives—I 
Beu that reputation and public con- 
fidence whtch thej have sought, and 
ia- «QiDe degree acquired, by a long 
of faithful, though imperfect 
to the country. I am aware 
tiuc mj reputation is suked upon 
tJbit plao ; but God forbid that my 
BeputaboQ, or that of any man, should 
be placed for a moment in oompetition 
wkh the great public interests which 
are concerned. I only wish the House 
to ddibeTate maturely, and to decide 
wisely. Such information as has ap« 
pcared to me necessary to enable f en- 
tlenen to take a complete view of the 
plan, will be put into their hands, and 
if any further information should be 
denrcd* 1 shall most readily lend my 
aaastanoe to furnish it.** 

This plan was strenuously opposed 
hj mMBj members of the House ; and 
at the auEqect i» of great national im- 
port»ice. It win be proper to give an 
anple Tiew of the louling arguments. 
^ By adopting this plan, it was said, 
we must incur the risk of losing the 
fruiu of all the sacrifices which we have 
amde for the last twenty years ;— that 
we wost lay ourselves open, not to the 
mere possmility, but to the probable 
and imminent dangler (in the event of 
a loa^ continuance of the war) of un- 
demuBinfff if not destroying alto- 
gether, Vb2t system of public credit 
which is the foundation of our pre- 
seat safety and independence, and the 
hst support of" that pre-eminent rank 
which we now maintain among the 
intioaa of tbe worid. 

** Tlsere is another question, (it was 
Slid), of a nu^rnitude not inferior to 
this, whiah cannot be put out of sight 
as the examination of these proposals, 
—the maintenance of public faith, on 
aQ ^Krsfiofit so essential to the honou^ 
«f the country, and in this bstance 
r eipecially to the honour and cha- 

racter of parliament. The highest con- 
siderations of public policy and public 
justice were therefore equally involved 
m the present discussion. The edifice 
of the sinking fund, which was thus to 
be pulled down, was perhaps the proud- 
est monument which was raised oy the 
virtues and genius of Mr Pitt to his 
owq fair fame* So it was held in hit 
own estimation ; so it is held in the 
estimation of his friends, and not only 
of his friends, but of those who were 
his political enemies, and of the whole 

« When Mr Pitt was called to the 
head of affairs, and to the manage- 
ment of the finances at the close of" 
the American war, credit was at itv 
lowest ebb, our revenues deplorably 
deficient, and our resources for im- 
proving them apparently exhausted. 
Vet such at that time were the real re- 
sources of the country, when properly 
called forth and wisely administered, 
that in the year 1786, Mr Pitt was 
enabled, after making provision for 
the interest of the j^ublic debt, andf 
for all the expenses of a peace esta- 
blishment, to set aside and appropriate! 
a surplus of income, amountmg to One 
Million annually, as the foundation of 
a sinkmg fund for the redemption oi 
the then existing debt of 258 millioBS* 
By the act of parliament which was 

fassed for this purpose, (26. Geo« 
II. cap. 31.) it was provided, that 
this sum of One Million should be li^ 
out either ia the redemption of stock, 
if at par, or, if under par, in the pur ; 
chase of it in the open market at the 
current price of the day y — that the 
interest arising from all stock so re- 
deemed should be added to the prin- 
cipal, and be laid out in the same man- 
ner, until hy their joint acciunulatioa 
at compound interest they should a- 
mount to the annual sum of four mil* 
lions $ — ^that when this sinking fund 
had reached that amount, it should 
Continue from thenceforth to be laid 
out at pimple interest only, leaving 

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the amoviit of interest innuaUy re- 
deemed at the disposal of parliament* 
Such it the outUne of the original plan 
devised b^ Mr Pitt for the reduction 
of the national deht» which, up to the 
year 1786| had been allowed to accu- 
mulate, without any permanent proTi- 
■ion bein^ made for its gradual and 
ultimate hquidadon. But he did not 
stop here. He wished, in the event of 
any future war, to guard the country 
aninst the erfls ansmg from too ra- 
pid an accumulation of debt, and con- 
sequent depression of public credit ; 
and to place us beyond the reach of 
that helplessness, alarm, and despond- 
ency, which had brought the finances 
of the country to the brink of ruin in 
the American war. Mr Pitt felt at 
that time, that the greatest difficulty 
which he had to contend with in fra- 
mineany permanent system of a sinking 
fund, was to find the means of pro- 
tecting it from the danger of future 
alienation, before it should have ac- 
complished the purpose for which it 
was formed. The plan which he sub- 
mitted to parliament in 1792 was 
framed with the specific view of guard- 
ing against this danger, and of hold- 
ing out to the public a guarantee, 
that any future debu which the state 
might have occasion to contract, 
should, from the moment of their be- 
ing incurred, be placed in a course of 
liauidation uniform and unalterable. 
This plan contained within itself a 
principle of permanency, which, being 
applied to every loan at the time of 
making the contract, could not from 
that moment be varied or departed 
from, without a breach of such con* 
tract. Under this plan not only the 
sinkiDg fund, which it provided, but 
the application and accumulation of 
that smking fund were so interwoven 
and bound up with the contract for 
the loan, as to remain a condition 
between the borrower and the lender, 
until every obligation of that contract 
should be cancelled by the extinction 

of the loan itself. That such was Mr 
Pitt's understanding of the plan which 
he proposed to paniament m 1792, is 
placed beyond all doubt (if indeed 
there could exist a doubt on the sub- 
ject) by what passed in the House oT 
Commons on that occasion. It wss 
made an objection to the measure^ 
that it would place the reimbursement 
of all future loans beyond the discre- 
tion and controul of parliament ;-«4tii 
objection which was answered by Mr 
Pitt in such a manner as to show, that, 
in his judgment, this very objection 
was the principal merit and recom- 
mendation of his plan. Another ad- 
vanta^ of the plan was, that by the 
mode m which it was carried into ef- 
fect, the power of the sinking fund is 
always necessarily increased, directly 
in proportion as public credit is de- 
pressed at the time of making the loan 
to which such smking fiind h aa- 

** These were the principles laid down 
by Mr Pitt in 1792, as the foundation 
ol a sinking fund, applicable to the U. 
quidation of an^ new debt. The mode 
provided by him for carrying these 
principles into efiect is so simple, that 
for the explanation of it little more 
can be necessary than to refer to that 
portion of the act (92 Geo. III. cap* 
65>) which provides for this measure* 

** The enactment, therefore, applica- 
ble to every loan that should be raised 
after 1791^ is simply this ; that either 
some specific provision should be rai- 
sed, for paving it off within a period 
which mignt extend to, but should 
not exceed, forty*five years ; or, in de- 
fault of such provision, that a smking 
fund equal to one per cent., not on 
the amount of the moner borrow* 
ed, but of the capital stock created, 
should ** from thenceforth'' issue firom 
the exchequer, and be applied at com- 
pound interest totheliquidation of such 
loan. It is therefore obvious, that at 
the time of making a loan, the govern- 
ment is at liberty to adopt either of 

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; fertu gradual redemption. 
declare to the parties with 
I it may be dealing ; firsts that it 
w2 ur» Tide for paying off in each rear 
«e n»ty-£(th of the capital to be bor- 
rowed ; or» aecondly^ that it wfll raise 
■oney by g raiitin g an annuity tenni* 
n^ble a forty>fiYe years ; or, thirdly* 
tfait BStcad of making provision in 
oae or other of these modes, for pay- 
■g off any portion of such loan im- 
oediatclyy a sinking fund shaD be as- 
signed to begin to operate at some fu* 
tore pexiody and of such an amount 
as tD earare the extinction of the loan 
bet we en the date of the conunencement 
of such linking fund and the end of the 
pre scrib ed term of forty- five years. But 
if BO specific proYi^n is made for the 
ledemption of the loan at the time of 
coatracting for it, then the other alter* 
•atxre of the one per cent, sinking fond 
takes elEect as a matter of course. 

^ The principle upon which the pe- 
liod of fbiity-fiTe years was fixed up- 
en as the extreme term beyond which 
dtt Hqindation of any niture debt 
dioold io no case be protracted, may 
he collected firom this circumstance ; 
that a sinking fund of one per cent, 
sperating at compound interest, and 
sopposing the rate of that interest to 
be wvaiiably three per cent., will re- 
deem a capital equal to one hundred 
tines its amount, in little more than 
farty.five years. We are not at li- 
berty to compel the public creditor to 
accept the repayment of his stock at 
mj price below par,— at par every 
MvtioD of the public debt is redeema- 
Ut ; but below that price, the state, 
fte any other purchaser, may go into 
the market and buy at the price of the 
4mj* Now the great bulk of our debt, 
as ewry body knows, consists of a 
three per cent, stock ; and we have 
•one which has been funded at a low- 
er rate. Consequently the lowest rate 
<f compound interest at which the 
waking fond can improve is three per 
ccot« It i$ the rate at which it would 

improve, if the three per cent, stock 
were uniformly paid at par. In pro- 
portion as the stock, instead of being 
paid off, is purchased belsw par, is that 
rate of improvement of the sinking 
fund increased. But as a one per cent, 
sinking fund constantly operating at 
three per cent, would redeem the ca* 
pital of any loan in a period of about * 
forty-five yean, it fellows, from there 
being no stock below that rate of in-' 
terest, that fortv-five years is the ulti- 
mate term to which the liquidation of 
any debt, having a sinking fund of 
one per cent, can by possibiUty be 
postponed. It is the maximum of 
time which the redemption would re- 
quire, on the supposition of the sink- 
ing fund being uniformly restrained^ 
by the most flourishing state of public 
credit, to the minimum of velocity at 
which it can proceed. Now it is a 
fact, not immaterial to the present 
discussion, that for the last fifty yean» 
the three per cents have never been at 
par ; that within that period they have 
Deen below fifty, and that for the last 
twenty yean (that is, since this law 
of 1792 began to take effect) their 
average price has not exceeded sixty- 

** Now, what has been, and is, the 
practical application of this law of 
1792 to the loans, which since that 
period have been raised for the public 
service ? When a loan is wanted, the 
Chancellor of the Exchequer, acting 
in behalf of the public, signifies to the 
parties disposed to lend their money^ 
thejparticular stocks in which he means 
to fund the loan. If, at the same time^ 
or at any time before the contract, he 
has it in contemplation to make any 
provision for the redemption of sucn 
other loan than a one per cent, sink* 
ing fund, he would of course apprise 
the parties of the nature of that pro* 
vision ; but if he should remain suent 
on this point, the law dedans to* them, 
without any confirmation from him, 
(and in point of fact they have on no 

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occasion ever, demoded or received 
any such confirmation) that a suking 
fund of one per cent, will issue of 
course, and will be employed at com- 
pound interest for the gradual re- 
demption of the new stock about to 
be created. Knowing this, the lend- 
ers are well aware that the efficacy of 
this sinking fund will be in proportion 
to the depression of the stock which 
they are to receive in return for their 
money {"^if three per cent, in cash, 
for instance, be what they are to re- 
ceive» and the price at which it is taken 
be 50, the sinking fund will be equal 
to two per cent, on the money capital 
borrowed ; and the rate in point of 
time, at which the redemption will then 
proceed, will be that of about twen- 
ty«three instead of forty-five years. 
Thus, in proportion to tne depression 
existing at the time does this sinkincr 
fund operate at once ^s an improved 
check to prevent a further fall, and 
as a powerful lever to produce, at no, 
distant period, a probable rise in the 
market. What is the consequence? 
Why, that the lenders are enabled and 
induced, or, by the competition which 
exists among tAem, compelled, to give 
better terms to the public. These bet- 
ter terms are the advantage which in 
every past loan the country has de- 
rived from a one per cent* sinking 
fund ; but it is an advantage obtained 
l>y incurring an obligation from which 
we are not now at liberty to depart. 
The advantage and the obligation are 
reciprocal ; they both commence with 
the commencement of the contract, and 
from that moment we are not at liberty 
to keep the one and' to disregard the 

, ** The foundation of the new system 
now proposed is this : the Chancellor 
of the Exchequer construes the act of 
1792 as leaving parliament at liberty 
to regulate and modify according to 
its discretion, in any manner and at 
any time, the redemption of the whole 
debt contracted under the terms of 

that act, provided the fioal liquidation 
of each of those separate loans, which 
together constitute the aggregate of 
that debt, is not protracted beyond 
the full period of for^y-five years. 

" The question of public faith which 
arises upon thi^ construction is,— - 
whether, having' made our option, at 
the time of a contract for each loan, 
in favour of a on6 per cent, sinking 
fund, and having received the benefit 
accruing from that option, the issue of 
that one per cent, from the Exche- 
quer, and its progressive acciimula- 
tion and uninterrupted application, be 
not thenceforth conditions of the con- 
tract itself, from which we are not at 
liberty to deviate, so long as any part 
of that loan shall continue unredeem- 
ed ? 

" Now, that there is nothing in the 
clause which has been read to autho- 
rise any option subsequent to the time 
of may ng the contract, is ^uite clear. 
If it had been the intention «f the 
legrislature to reserve to itself a subse- 
quent power of reverting to the first 
alternative of forty-five years, should 
we not have found, at tjie end of this 
clause, some words declaratory of this 
intention ? 

*^ The act does not in terms pre- 
scribe any period when the issue on the 
one per cent, on each separate loan, 
and Its accumulation at compound in^ 
terest, shall cease and determine ; but 
as by this act each loan is a sepaiate 
debt, with its own distinct Muking 
fund, and as that sinking fund can 
have no other application than the 
liquidation of the particular loan in 
respect of which it was originally »• 
sued, there can be no doubt that, ac- 
cording to the intent and meaning of 
the act, the whole charge of such 
loan, as well for interest as for sinking 
fund, is set free, and reverts to the 
consolidated fund as soon as that liqui* 
dation is completed. This construc- 
tion of the law will not be disputed. 

« It is impossible that wy man 

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Chaf. S.3 



aboold entertain a serious opinion that 
'the measure can be carried into effect 
without a departure ^m the act of 
1792» and a consequent violation of 
die contracts made under that act. If 
nnder this statute the legislature can 
cany its interference to the extent pro- 
poaedy what is there to prevent its ^o- 
ing a step farther, and meddling with 
the isMue of the one per cent, itself? 
The issue, the application, the accu- 
mnlatioay are all governed by the same 
enactments, without any proviso or 
exception to enable it to vary or mo« 
dify the one more than the other. 

*< In a case of this nature, it is not 
immaterial to enquire what has been 
the general nnderstanding upon the 
subject. The first report of the com- 
mittee of finance of the year 1797 re- 
lates to the public debt and the sink- 
ing fund ; and it concludes with these 
remarkable words : * The old sinking 
fund, after reaching the sum of four 
mUlioDB, is no longer made applica- 
ble by law to the discharge, at com- 
pound interest, of what may then re- 
main of the old debt ; but the opera- 
tion of the new sinking fund is to 
continue at compound interest till the 
new debt shall be totally discharged.' 

*< It is impossible to mistake the ob- 
ject or meaning of this sentence. By 
marking the difference between the 
old sinking fund and the new, between 
the loan of 1786 and that of 1792, it 
most forcibly delineates the true cha- 
racter of the latter. Respecting the 
most distinguished committee that 
made this report, it is only necessary 
to ask, if it is too much to assume that 
the public had a right to look to this 
report for the true construction of the 
act of 1792, and to rest upon it as a 
guarantee that that construction would 
befuthfuUy adhered to and observed ? 

'^ It is an error, which must sooner 
or later prove fatal to our credit, that 
we arc doing enough if we reserve 
sack a sinking fund as would redeem 
our debt in forty-five years, without 

reference to the total amount of tba^ 
debt. The proportion of the sinking 
fund to the unredeemed debt is but a 
secondary consideration ; the actual 
amount of that debt ought to be the 
first object of our solicitude. It is un- 
deniable ii\ theory, that a debt of 1000 
millions would as certainly be liqui- 
dated in forty- five years by a sinking 
fund of ten millions, as that a debt of 
loo millions would be liquidated by a 
inking fund of one miffion. But in 
oractice, a debt of 100 millions might 
be safe, and possibly salutary to the 
state, even without any sinking fund 
at all ; whilst 1000 millions of unre- 
deemed debt, all liable to be brought 
into the market, might, under ma- 
ny conceivable circumstances, entirely 
break down that credit, which the 
smaller sum would in no degree im« 
pair. Comparisons of this nature, in 
proportion as they are true in arith- 
metic, are dauorerous in the concerns ^ 
of nations, ^^ilst they gratify inge- 
nuity in the closet, they may under- 
mine our resources upon the Stock 

** It may be said, that any proposal 
which postpones the necessity ofadd- 
in^r to our burdens, however pregnant 
with difficulty and danger that propo- 
sal may be in its pr<n>able and not 
distant consequences, cannot fail, espe- 
cially if those consequences are kept 
out of its sight, to be favourably re- 
ceived by the public. The plan pos- 
sesses undoubtedly that claim to fa- 
vour. If support had been asked upon 
that claim only, the discussion would 
have been much simplifieid. But in 
the statement of the Chancellor of the 
Exchequer, this benefit is obscured and 
lost anudst the blaze of more brilliant 
advantages and dazzling prospects 
which have been opened on this occa- 


•< These other advantages of the plan 
amount to four; first, that it pro- 
vides for a gradual and equable reduc- 
tion of the national debt ; Eceondly, 

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that it provides againit the evila likelj 
to arise from too rapid a diminution of 
the rate of interest ; thirdly^ that it 
provides an immediate subsidy of 120 
millions for carrying on the present 
war ; and, fourthly, that it provides 
for the accumulation of a treasure of 
100 millions in t;ime of peace, as a re- 
•erve for any future war. 

^ With respect to the first of these 
advantaees, astonishment alone can be 
excited by naming it. * A gradual and 
equable redbction of the national debt V 
as if that reduction was at this moment 
too rapid, — as if there was any thing 
arbitrary and capricious in the present 
, mode of applying the sinkin^^ fund I 
Again, as if we nad already done too 
much in the way of reduction of a 
debt, which, when the new sinking 
fund began, was little more than 200 
millions, and which now exceeds 600 
millions unredeemed,— as if it were ne- 
cessary, in order to make that reduc- 
tion more equable, to diminish the 
amount of the sinking fund of the year 
in proportion as the amount of the 
loan is increased,— as if it were parti- 
cularly wise and pressing to begin to 
check the growth of the sinking fund 
in the present year, which will make sK 
greater addition to the debt than all 
that was added to it in the six prece- 
ding years of the war ! 

** That any one should have spent 
his time in providing, at this moment, 
for the second of these advantages, is 
still more surprising. * The evils likely 
to arise from too rapid a diminution of 
the rate of interest' — when, with all 
the aid that credit has derived from 
the present rapidlv growing sinking 
fund,— >with all the improvements, won- 
derful and extensive beyond the hopes 
of the most sanguine in our situation^— 
with all the temptations which a nomi- 
nal capital holds out to the lender in 
the three per cents, government is not 
able, even in that favourite fund, to 
raise a single 100^. within the legal rate 
of interest ! With these circumstances 

before the public^— wiA a loan to be 
ne^odated for the service of the year 
which cannot be much short of fortj 
millions, — what is the step taken witn 
a view to an inunediate practical e€Fect } 
Why a . successive diminution of the 
sinkmg fund infinitely more rapid than 
ita growth has ever been, to be accom* 
pamed with a series of loans much 
larger than were ever before raised in 
this country. 

<< The other advantages of the plan 
consist in the accumulation^ during 
peace of a fund to enable miniatera to 
undertake new wars, and the post* 
ponement of ^lesh taxes for the next 
three years. But we fhould be dc^ 
parting from the example of former 
parliaments, and of the great men of 
other and (at least in that respect) 
better times, we should be losing sight 
of every sound principle of state poli- 
cy, and of every established maxim of 
practical finance, if we were on this 
occasion to surrender our judcrment to 
our feelings, and to shrink from the 
duty of a dispassionate enquiry from 
the dread of its leadine us, contrary to 
our wishes, to a painful conclusion. 

« In vindication of the plan this ar- 
grument has been used ;-— that, admit- 
ting it not to be strictly consistent with 
justice to the creditor of the state, 
still, if it promises to operate greatly 
to the general relief of the public, 
without being materially prejudicial 
to the public creditor, it ought to be 

** Without dwelling, it was said, up- 
on such general observations as must oc- 
cur to every man upon the great dan- 
ger of attempting to justify by this 
doctrine of conveniency a violation of 
tlie plain letter of an engagement,— 
without stopping to remind the com- 
mittee, that in such attempt we are at' 
once party and j^dge, and judge with- 
out appesd, we may confine ourselves 
to the mere question of probable in- 
jury. If not immediately, m the course 
of DO very long period, the plan must 

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le IdghW pvejttdicial to thejpubliccre* 
Sxar. It msLj not operate immediate- 
Ijf because poBtkal circumstances are 
iiow Teiy Eavourahk to public credit $ 
md abo became» in tbe first year of 
thn jdan, the sinking fund will not be 
I matmallj, if at all, impaired. But 
' what must be its effect in future years* 
wbcn the sinking fund will be dimi- 
nished between seven and ei^^ht mil* 
lioof ; and when the public mind may 
possibly not be elated with the same 
sanguine hopes as are justly entertain* 
cd at this moment ? 

^ This» it is true, is not the first time 
\^at we have had recourse to expe- 
i dieots widely departing from the orai- 
nary and legitimate system of adding 
to our income by permanent taxes in 
proportion to the increase of perma- 
nent charge created by the loan of the 
Tear. In 1807 an expectation was 
held out to the people, that no new 
taxes should be imposed for three 
years. Accordingly the loan of that 
year was assigned upon the war-taxes, 
la iSOS, the falling in of the short 
annuities, and an advance by the bank 
of three millions without interest, ena- 
bled parliament to meet the charge of 
the small loan required for that year, 
without materially breaking in upon 
the assurance that taxation should be 
nupended for three years. In 1809 
the charge of the loan was thrown 
apon the war-taxes. This measure 
was strongly objected to; and the 
ground of its defence was not the g^e- 
oeral policy of the measure, but its 
particnlar expediency, and for that 
year only, as necessary to complete 
the term of the respite from taxation 
promised in the year 1807- The war- 
taxes mortgaged for the charge of this 
loan amounted to one million. It is 
obvious that the effect of this mort- 
gage was of course to diminish the 
u^KMable revenue, and to increase 
the loan to the saose amount in that 
and every subsequent year. If instead 
sf the waur-taxes, the million be taken 

firom the sinking fiudf a difference to 
that amount is created between the 
sum borrowed and the sum redeemed* 
In both cases, the effect for the first 
year with respect to the public credit 
and the accumulation of debt is the 
same ; but, prospectively^ that credit 
will be injured in an infinitely greater 
degree^ by the deduction of a milHon 
from the sinking fund ; because this 
million would have continued to im« 
prove and accumulate at compound 
interest for the reduction of the debt ; 
which of course is not the case with 
the million of war-taxes. 

** If our resources are not infinite and 
absolutely inexhaustible ; if we have 
already dipped deep into those re- 
sources ; surely it tne more becomes 
us well to consider whether the re« 
mainder are not now in danger of be» 
ing dissipated with unnecessary cele* 
rity i Whether by mortgaging now 
at usurious interest that income which 
we had wisely set aside for the dis- 
charge of existing incumbranoesy we 
shall be more at our ease some few 
vears hence? Whether by accumu- 
lating debt now upon terms which 
may oblige us to r^eem it at an ex- 
pense nearly double hereafter, we are 
compensated for the immediate pres- 
sure of usurious interest by the pros- 
pect of future relief ? 

« One great consideration of econo- 
my is, that the reduction of interest up- 
on the five and four per cent, stocks, 
which has always been looked to as 
one of the advantages that would 
be realized by the sinking 

fund on the restoration of peace, and 
which would produce a saving of 
nearly three miluons a-year, must ne« 
cessarily be retarded by the proposed 

Such were the leading arguments 
for and against this measure. After 
a very full and able discussion, the 
plan proposed by the Chancellor of 
the Exchequer received the sanction 
of the legislature. 

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On the 8th March, Lord Palmer- 
8ton hrought forward the army esti- 
mates for the year. His lordship 
9f2ttAf that the first head to which he 
should direct the attention of the 
House, was the land forces, which 
comprehended the whole regular ar- 
' my, with the exception of foreign 
corps in British pa^, the regiments 
employed in the territorial possessions 
of the East-India Company, and the 
embodied militia. In this department 
there had been an accession of 9600 
men, and an additional expense of 

The second head referred to regi- 
ments in the East Indies, but as these 
were by law declared to be a burden 
on the revenues of the Company, it 
was only necessary to mention them, 
that the whole state of the army of 
Great Britain might come into one 
complete view. For the purpose of 
recruiting for this fbrce^ two additional 
companies of 48 men at an expense of 
20001. were now established. 

The ne^t head was the embodied 
militiai in which there was only a dif- 
ference of two men, and of expense 
17,000^. in recruiting ; but in conse- 
quence of the vote of last year, re- 
specting the supernumeraries, there 
was a diminution in expense of 50,000^. 
on the British, and 12,000/. on the 
Irish establishment. 

The next head was that of general 
staff and garrisons, and in thh there 
was an increase of 41,000/.| owing to 
the augmentadon of the staff serving 
abroad, particularly in the medical de- 
partment, and to the transfer of the sum 
of 15,000^ which had heretofore been 
charged in the army extraordinaries 
for the deputy quarter- master general, 
&c. but which was now placed among 
the army estimates. This addition 
also arose from the py established 
for a commander-in-chief in the Mau- 
ritius, and the appointment to several 
iaew commissions m the West Indies. 
It was customary to allow the com- 

mander of the forces lOOM. to equip 
himself, and this sum, with the other 
items he had enumerated, made up the 
total increase of 41,000/. 

The next head was that of full pay 
to supernumerary officers, which ex- 
ceeded the estimate of last year 20,000/. 
in consequence of the greater number 
of those officers whose services de- 
served so well of their country, ha- 
ving retired. 

The next was the public-department 
allowances, in which the increase was 
28,000/., arising from a larger sum be- 
ing necessary to the pay-omce for ex - 
clftquc^ fees. The salary of the head 
of that office was also augmented to 
2500/., and there was also an increase 
of 600/. in the commander-in-chief's 
office, from his secretary's becoming 
entitled from his length of service to 
a larger salary, viz. 3500/. The war- 
•ffice was nearly the same as last year. 
The adjutant-general's office required 
935/., from an arrangement being 
made, that the dcputy-adjutant-gene- 
ral should receive the full pay of his 
rank, the office pay of 19s per day 
being considered inadequate. And ^ 
similar arrangement had taken plaCe 
in the quarter-master- general's de- 
partment, in which, however, there 
was a diminution of 500/. The charge 
for the depot for military knowledge 
amounted to 1500/., which was paid 
over to the deputv- quarter-master-ge- 
neral for the pUrcnase of maps, charts, 
&c. There was nothing more worth 
notice under this head. 

Under the next, that of the in-pen- 
sioners of Chelsea and Kilmainnam 
hospitals, there was an addition of 
1300/. from the pensioners this year 
receiving full clothing, which they 
only did every other year 

Under the next head, the out-pension • 
ers of these establishments, there was 
an additional claim of 38,000/. as ar- 
rear of pensions of former years in Ire- 
land, but this would be met by sums 
already rated and unexpended. 

Digitized by 


Chap. S.Q 



The elerenth head was that of wi- 
dows' pensions ; and here there was an 
I of IfiSa.^ as there had been 

a greater number of desenring appli- 
cants put upon the list than could be 
pr o vided for by the money which had 
tolkn in from deaths or marriages. 

Under the next headf the volunteer 
corpcy the ezpence was 56,0001. less 
than in the former year; and a far- 
ther reduction of 8,300/. had uken 
place in the local militia» from a re- 
dnc^doo of the numbers^ in conse- 
quence of the act of last session. 

The next head was the foreign 
corps, and mduded the supplementary 
estimate. Here there was an increase 
of %S00 men» and 90^00M. expence, 
arising from the additions to the Ger- 
man Legion, and the formation of two 
foreign veteran battaHons, in which we 
empfoy these men, worn out in our 
service, instead of sending them abroad 
as before. Thb system had been alter- 
ed^ ami the new mode adopted, in 
consequence of the present state of 
the continent, which subjected these 
brave men to danger, such as this 
country, so wdl served by them, would 
Aot permit them to encounter/ The 
smooit was also mcreased by the for- 
fltttion of seven independent compa- 
aies, composed of Frenchmen--.-At 
the b^;inning of hostilities, the deser- 
tions from the enemy in Spain had been 
confined to Germans, but within the 
fast year and a half, the privations to 
which they were exposed nad induced 
asny Frenchmen to come over. These 
nen coald not be incorporated with 
our foreign corps ; and in order to ob- 
tain useful and nuhtarr service from 
tkeon, k vras determined to form them 
isto small troops or companies^ as 
the nature of their services might be, 
lather than embody them ahogether 
into one mass of force. Each indivi* 
doal was placed in the same rank 
which he had held in the French ar^oy. 
The next head was the royal miu-> 


Ury college, in the expence of whick 
there was an increase 6f 18,900iL | but 
a balance of 8,80(M. left htt jear, 
would reduce this item to 9>400k in- 
cluding 2,8002. in the dvil depart- 
ment, expended in the purchase of a 
house at Eamh&m, rendered necessary 
by the esublishment at Sandhurst, 
and also including the expence of two 
new companies of cadets. 

Under the next head, the Royal Mi- 
litary Asylum, there was a small in- 
crease. In the allowances to retired 
chaplains, &c., the estimates were 
nearly the same ; and in the nedidne 
and hospital expenoes, there was a di- 
minution to the extent of 2,500/. 

The following head was the Com- 
passionate List, under which there was 
an increase of 4,700^., in consequence 
of there being a greater nun^er of 
dumants upon the fund, whose me- 
rits demanded compliance with thdr 

Under the next head) the Irish Bar- 
rack Department, there was an in- 
crease ot 9,50tf., occasioned by the 
transfer of an item which had been 
placed under another head, and by the 
rise in the price of necessaries for the 
troops^-^The commissariat department 
of Ireland exceeded the last year's es-* 
ttmate by 28,000/., in consequence of 
the increase of forac^e money for the 
cavalry, and the £livery of great 
coats and 15,000 pair of shoes to the 
men.— *The last head was that of su- 
perannuations ; and here there was a 
diminution of 541/., from the death 
of the late Mr Lewis> although thb 
retirement of Colonel Paterson from 
office, with a pension, had added to 
the charge^ The general view, as 
he had already stated, would give an 
increased expence of 399,000/., but 
a deduction of 18,000/. from this 
would leave the correct total amount, 

With respect to our force, it was 
satisfactory to state, that the differ* 

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ence between the effective strength at 
the end of 1811, and the end of 1812, 
was very favourable, notwithstanding 
the extent and nugnitude of the ser- 
vices in which our armies were enga- 
ged, notwithstanding the casualties of 
umg, active, and harassing campaigns, 
nardies, disease, and losses in battle. 
Surmounting all these obstacles, we 
had an actual increase of 10,900 effec- 
tive men. Of these a considerable 
number, indeed, were of the foreign 
corps ; but in British alone there was 
a clear augmentation of 2,000 men, 
besides 400 Spaniards, who had been 
incorporated with them in the penin- 

The Secretary at War then pro- 
ceeded to notice the success which had 
attended the recruiting service within 
^e last year, and which, he contended, 
had not arisen from commercial dis- 
tress, but was general throughout the 
country. One cause to which he at- 
tributed it, was a change in the re- 
cruiting system, by employing officers 
well cficukted for the service, and 
giving them districts, with the com- 
mand of all parties therem, though 
not belonging to their own regiments, 
instead of employing young officers, 
who accepted the task rather as a 
leave of absentee than as a service. 
The experiment had first been tried 
in the Gloucester district, and had 
dnoe been extended to four or five 
other districts, in aU of which still 
proving productive and beneficial, 
the system would now be general- 
1t resorted to. The continuance of 
w officer in the district depended 
on his success ; and the plan would, in 
the first instance, have the good effect 
of disengi^;ing 700 officers, and uni- 
ting them to their several regiments. 
Another of the improvements was to 
allow a larger share of the reward to 
the non-commissioned officers, upon 
whose exertions the success in recruit- 
ing must in a great measure depend. 

however active and dffigent their su- 
perior officers miirht be— The num* 
Ur of mrruit. rlsed la.t ye» wa. 
14,iS2, by ordinary recruiiing.' This 
was a great increase ; in the preceding 
years it had been risingfrom 9 and 10^ 
to 11 and 12,000. The volunteers 
from the militia were nearly equal to 
the full nundxr allowed, namely, 
9,900, making a total to the army of 
24,885. The place of the volunteers 
from the militia was fiUed up bj beat 
of drum, and therefore the total addi- 
tion to the regular army migrht be 
said to have been j^ained by toe suc- 
cess of the recruiting service. This 
was a satisfactory refiection, and it 
must afford to the House great satis- 
faction to see the ardour and spirit of 
the people rise in proportion to the 
demands upon their services. 

It might be necessary, the Secre* 
tary at War continued, to explun the 
difference which existed between the 
number of casualties accounted for, 
and those which leallv had happen* 
ed. In the account ot the casualties 
which had been ffiven, all those 
which had happened on foreign stac 
tions were included. Some persons 
who knew that the case was to, had 
expressed their surprise at the small 
amount of the casualties stated in the 
returns. The return which had been 
called for by the House, was that of 
the casualties for 1812, which neces- 
sarily did not include those which had 
taken place during the latter months 
of 1811 ; so that those persons who 
had professed to feel so much asto- 
nishment at the smallness of the num- 
ber, probably thought Uiat the latter 
months of the year 1811 were inclu- 
ded in the return. On the one hand, 
the number of men added to the army 
during 1812, amounted to 37,762, in- 
cluding those raised by reguhr re- 
cruiting — ^by recruiting from the mi- 
litia, £c. On the other hand, the 
casualties of 1812 amounted altoge* 

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ther to 29*5689 of which number 
%tTI5 were accounted for in the re- 
tarn. This left 2,787 unaccounted 
br. In order to ezpbun why there 
vat such a number unaccounted for, 
it would be necessary to state, that 
when a regiment was sent abroad, the 
comaaading officer was accountable 
for ail the men. But when on ser- 
vice, all those men who were so 
wovaded or disabled, as to be ren- 
dered unfit for service, were sent home 
k detachments. Those so sent home 
weie struck off the list of effective 
men abroad, and not being taken on 
the effective list at home, (although 
idtiniatdy accounted for by their 
cosunaading officers,} there was a 

Hpetual balance of men, who were 
uded in the lists of effective men 
■either at home or abroad, and this 
balance would make up the differ- 
ence between the number account- 
ed for in the return of casualties, and 
the Dumber which was actually defi- 
ciest« Sach was the real cause of a 
difference which appeared at first 
s^t so extraordinary. 

The Secretary at War concluded 
by moving a resolution, << That it is 
the opinion of this committee, that a 
SUB not exceeding 3,687,501/. be 
mated to his majesty to complete 
ue sum required for defraying the 
duffge of the land-forces at home and 
abroad, from December 25, 1812, to 
December 2^ 1813.'' This motion, 
after some discussion of little interest, 
was agreed to. 

On the 31st March, the Chancellor 
af the Exchequer, in a committee of 
ways and means, and after explaining 
the terms of the loan which had re- 
cently been contracted, proceeded to 
the taxes which would be 

atoessary to make that provision for 
the siakinff fund, which was involved 
ia the bifl in progress through the 
Hooie. lo addition to the 87O,O0Ql. 
which, in the developement of Im fi- 

nancial plan, he had shown to be ne- 
cessary to supjply the drain on the 
sinking fund, it would be recollect* 
ed, be observed, that, in providing 
the supplies for the last year, there 
was one tax^— the auction dutyr^ 
which he Had calculated at 100,0001., 
and which having abandoned, it be- 
came necessary for him to supply the 
consequent deficiency in the consoli- 
dated fund. The total sum tberefone 
which it became requisite to raise by 
permanent taxes was nearly a million 
of money, viz. 870,000/. to be applied 
to the sinking fund and 100,000/. 
being the deficiency occasioned by 
the relinquishment fast year of the 
auction duty. For the purpose of 
providing the last-mentiooed sum, it 
was his intention to propose an addi- 
tional duty on tobacco equal to that 
imposed on it last year, which du^ 
he would estimate at 100,0* OA aU 
though probably it would produce 
more. He was not aware that this 
new tax would occasion any incon- 
venience ; or at least he was persuaded 
that it would cause as little as any that 
could be devised.^- With regard to the 
greater sum of 870,000/ the principsl 
tax which he meant to propose to meet 
it was an increase of the custom du^ 
ties. He thought this would be in- 
finitely preferable to any augmenta- 
tion of the assessed taxes, or of the 
stamp duties, which had lately been 
so much increased. As the most con- 
venient mode, he proposed to raise 
the sum of 8 or 900,000/. by a gene- 
ral increase of the custom duties with 
certain exceptions. These exceptions 
were the duties on tea, sugar, wine» 
raw silk, and cotton wooL On the 
other articles which paid custom du- 
ties he proposed an increase of 85 
per cent. No such general augmen- 
tation had occurred since 186V and 
only one partial and small increase in 
1805. Under the existing circum- 
stances of the conntry this increase 

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would be comparatively little felt. 
For the country had until recently 
been so much excluded from foreign 
trade* that aU foreign articles had 
come to our markets, what with the 
difficulty of transmission, the charge 
of lights, &c. under an augmenta- 
tion of expence, greatly exceeding the 
proposed rate of duty Many circum- 
stances had, however, recently com- 
bined to render those articles at the 
present moment cheaper to the con- 
sumer, even with the increased tax, 
than they were last year without it. 
He would estimate the amount of the 
increase of the custom duties at from 
850/. to 900,000?.— In addition to 
this, however, he meant to propose a 
alight augmenution of the excise du- 
ties in a particular branch. He pro- 
posed that this should take place on 
French wines, an article of mere luxury, 
entirely confined to the higher orders, 
and if checked in the importation, or 
wholly shut out, he should consider 
the exclusion to be a national advan- 
tage . On French wines he proposed 
to lay an additional excise duty ot ISdL 
a bottle, which would be about ISd. to 
the consumer I a tax that could not be 
considered very burdensome to the 
country. The produce he estimated 
at 80,000/. no very great snm, and 
one indeed which it would hardly be 
worth while so t« raise, were not the 
subject itself one so proper for taxa- 
tion, that even were the import likely 
to produce less, or were the consump- 
tion to be so diminii^ed as to impair 
the existing produce of the duty upon 
it, he should still feel it to be incum- 
bent upon him to make his present 
proposition.*-The estimated produce, 
therefore, of the permanent taxes 
would be F50,000/. — from the general 
increase in the consolidated duties of 
customs,— -100,000?. from the duty on 
tobacco, — andSO,€00f?. frond the duty 
on French wines, making in the whole 
a sum somewhat short of a miUioni 

to answer two obiects,-— the support of 
the sinking fund, and to make good 
the defalcation caused by the abandon- 
ment last year of the auction duty..— 
Although he had thought proper thus 
to propose a substitute for the auction 
duty, he by no means lost sight of it* 
He did not think it would be satisfac- 
tory to take it for the purpose of 
contributing to the immediate supply ; 
but he resenred to himself the libeitr 
of proposing means to prevent fraud, 
and to reguute the duty, if he should 
findit necessary so to do.— Those which 
he had mentioned were permanent 
taxes. He should next propose to lay 
some further taxes under the head of 
war taxes, for the general purpose of 
assisting the supplies for the year, and 
for the particular object of providing 
for the one per cent, sinking fund, or 
exchequer buls outstanding on the 5th 
January of each year, to be granted 
to the commissioners for the reduction 
of the national debt. These war taxes 
he wished to class under the head of 
imports and exports. The first that 
he should propose wonU be a genend 
increase of^duty on the importation of 
all goods and merchandise the tmrmi- 
facture of the French empire, and of 
all the countries dependent on France. 
It was true, that tradelicences to France 
and her dependencies were not now 
granted by government, but it was 
obvious that circumstances might ren- 
der it politic to renew them ; and we 
had an undoubted right to retaliate on 
the enemy all the oppression in which 
he had persevered against our com- 
merce. It was proposed to double the 
war-duty on such articles. Those 
war-duties were at present equal to 
one-third of the consolidated duties. 
He proposed to add to them the 
amount of the other two-thirds, thus 
making the whole of the duties in 
war double the duties in peace on 
French goods. It vras extremely dif- 
ficult to estimate the probable produce 

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Chap. S.] 



•f this increase* It would Tary with 
the ftate of our intercourse with 
France. If he took the average of 
the kat three years, he would say that 
it might amount to 9O0fi00l. — ^me 
aztiMa were wholly prohihited; of 
otben the difficulty of importation 
t great ; hut hy taking the Tarious 
and allowing one as it were 
to airport the other, ne was confident 
the produce would not fall short of 
that which he had just sUted. With 
respect to the exports, the trade ahout 
to open would m all prohahility he 
so great, that no material incohre- 
nience could, b his opinion, arise from 
addin|r a haUper cent, to the presen t ex- 
port dotiet* In peace, such a proposi- 
tion would he impolitio— not so at the 
present moment. He calculated that it 
migiht produce about 150/XXM. and 
on this iMranch of increased revenue he 
tbopght he might confidentlj rely. 

Toe incieased import duties would 
be on goods coming from all coun- 
tries dependent on rrance. It would 
eive him great pleasure to see those 
dmies lessened by the diminution of 
the number of those countries. They 
were not to attach to the exports of 
aay countries in amity with his ma- 
jesty, and the declaration of that a- 
fluty would immediately cause the ces- 
satioa of those dutiea^— The only other 
addicional duty on the exports which 
he BKant to propose, was a duty of a 

a pound on the exportation of 

hides, which would operate 
fcry advanta^reoudy on our leather 
flmrafactores m foreign markets, and 
k would haw been proper perhaps 
that ere now this measure should have 
been adopted, as hides might be con- 
sidered as in some measure a military 
store.— The only remaining article of 
proposed taxation, was one which he 
was induced to adopt on political as 
well as on financial principles— it was 
a duty on importation of American 
Qstton wool. The American govern* 

ment had declared their principal ports 
to be in a sute of blockade, extend- 
ing from Rhode Island southward; 
thus endeavouring to deprive our ma- 
nufurturers of that important raw ma- 
terial He had every reason to believe, 
that if proper encouragement were 
given to the importation of cotton 
wool from our own colonies, this stop- 
page on the part of the Americans 
would be wholly innoxious to this 
country. It was obvious, however, 
that to create this encouragement it 
would be necessary to secure the mer- 
chant bringing cotton wool from such 
a disUnce aninst lotin^ by his spe- 
culation. If the merchant incurred 
the danger of having the sale of his 
cotton injured in our market by the 
American cotton, he would be in a 
state of little promise and great un- 
certainty. Unfortunately such an oc- 
currence had lately taken place;— 
when the American government im« 
posed the embargo on their ports» 
which occasioned a temnorary stop- 
page!of the importation of cotton-wool 
from the Umted States, encourage* 
aaent veas given by. government ^in 
order to prevmit iniury to the British 
manufiscturer) to tne importation of 
large quantities from our own colo* 
nies. Butunluckily they came too late 
-<— the Americans had taken off their 
embargo ; and, unprotected by such a 
countervailing duty as that which he 
was about to propose, the British 
merchant sustained very considerable 
loss. It was to prevent the occur- 
rence of similar events that he was 
induced to make his pro|>osition. 
The object which he had m view was 
to procure the fine article from the 
East Indies, by affording a sufficient 
encouragement to the importers. There 
was at present a sufficient (quantity oq 
hand of every kind ; and it was the 
object of his measure (intended to 
pronoote the importation of the finer 
kind,) to prevent the ruin which would 

Digitized by VjOOQIl 



fall on the importeri by any ftudden 
competition, Witb this view, lie pro- 
posed to lay a protectiog duty of three 
halfpence per pound on all American 
cotton imported in British ships, and 
a duty of sixpence per pound on aU 
such cotton imported in foreign bot- 
toms. — The whole consumption of 
cotton in our own manufactures was 
SO millions of pounds, of which SO 
millions came from America The 
deficiency, even if more were now im- 
ported from America, would be made 
up by that imported from the West 
Indies and Brasil.i— There was only 
one objection to this measure, whicn 
was, that it would raise the price of 
the raw material on the manufac- 
turers in the first instance, and even- 
tually on the ooosumer. With respect 
to the home consumer, he thought, 
however, that it could be hardly felt, 
and with regard to the export trade, 
•he was of opinion there was no rea- 
son to apprehend any rivalry on the 
continent of Europe, and America 
was at present out of the question. 
He apjprebended that no fear could be 
entertamed of aov competition in 
France, where the duty on cotton now 
existing was five shillings per pound, 
.whereas the duty in contemplation 
here woald only amount to nine-pence 
-entirely, which threw at present a sort 
of monopoly of this aaticle into our 
iiands. As to the other nations of 
the continent, some of whose territo- 
ries were the seat of war, and whose 
jreneral internal insecurity was adverse 
to commercial enterprise, but little 
.could be apprehended from their com- 
|>etitiom He conceived, at tJbe same 
time, that it would be desirable that 
government should have the means of 
varying this measure according to cir- 
cumstances, and with this view he had 
it in contemplation to propose that a 
power should be given to his majesty 
in council to suspend or reduce any of 
those war-dutiee, according to any 

circumstances which might arise at 
this important crisis to imike it expe- 
dient so to do. — He hoped he had 
provided for the charges required by 
the public service in the least objec- 
tionable manner. It was difficult ia 
these cases to calculate exactly, but 
he thought he had here made ampW 
prorision for all reverses, as the taxes 
m question would, in the ordinary- 
state of trade, produce three times 
as much as he had calculated. Any 
surplus in the present case would go 
into the war-taxes, in aid of the other 
resources of the conntry. — The reso« 
lutions arising out of these proposals 
were carried « ter a short debate. 

On the 11th June, the Chancelkn* 
of the Exchequer for Ireland kid 
before the House his plan for meet- 
ing the extraordinary and additional 
expenditure of this year, which he 
stated as amounting in roand numbers 
to 600,000/. " He was aware,'* he 
said, ** that it was the opiaioa of some 
gentlemen, that the system recently 
mtroduced bto this country, miskt 
apply, in a certain degree, to fie- 
land } and that recourse might be had 
to the sinking fund. But, however 
this might be demanded, by the hope 
of avoiding fresh burdens, yet, the 
argumenU applied to the sUte of this 
country coukI not be applied to Ire- 
land in an equal extent* it had been 
his principal object, in the taxes which 
he had already the honour to propote, 
several of which had met with the ap- 
probation of the House and the siiac- 
tion of parliament, to press as little as 
possible on the lower classes of the 
community, and avoid bearing on 
those great sourcesof prosperity which 
were absolutely necessary to the wdl 
being of a rising country. To pur- 
sue a different policy in a country 
deficient in resources, and possess- 
ing no great capital, would be the 
means of defeating her prosperity, and 
rendering ineffectual those burdens 

Digitized by 





were impoied on her, — He 
kid already tUtcd, that the charge 
far the lous of the present year was 
9d5JB3SL He would now proceed to 
explain the means hj which it was in- 
tended to meet this charge. He had 
already submitted to the House a pro- 
poakion for the further increasing the 
late of the custom^udes in Ireland ; 
ikat increase was 25 per cent* which 
was eadmated to produce 77»t}26/. 
The increased duty of 12?. 9d. per 
100l&#. on tobacco, was estimated at 
iS^fiSU. The additional duty on co£. 
fee, 1»900/. The increase of one*third 
of the difference between the British 
aad Irish duties on foreign wines, 
40,565^ These, with one or two 
akerationa in existing taxes, formed 
aa •ggng9Xe of 265,000/. The next 
doty was that which had already been 
sanctioned by the House, the ad- 
dkioQ of Sf • per barrd on malt ; the 
produce of which was estimated at 
IIS/XM The next duty he had to 
notice, was one to which, if he could 
jodge from the general sentiments of 
the House, he could expect no op« 
position ; he alluded to an additional 
raty of sixpence on each gallon of spi- 
rits. It had been justly argued that 
St. havinff been imposed on each barrel 
of flsak, there should be a correspond* 
iag dutT laid on spirits. He did not 
^mk that the addition of sixpence 
per gaHoo could ottterially afiect the 
■tertsu of the distiller; at the same 
he fek confident, that an in* 
! of duty on the distilleries was 
a m c asuie which parliament ought not, 
and wonld not, in the present posture 
of aSurs, be anxious to oppose. The 
anonat of this additional duty on 
•prits, calcokted on 4,400,000 gal* 
mn^ a less quantity than was ever 
kaown to haTe bem distilled in any 
one year, would be 110,00a;.«^The 
aext duty he had to state was one to 
whidi parliament had already acceded, 
that was the augnsentation of the as- 

sessed taxes; this augmentatioB was 
on the whole of their amount estimated 
at 25 per cent. It did not however 
operate generally as a duty of 25 per 
cent, b^use persons in the lower 
ranks of life, and who might be sup* 
posed unable to bear it, did not come 
within its scope to that extent. The 
principal produce was expected from 
the rich ; taking, therefore, the wlu^ 
tax, he estimated that it would pro* 
duce 100,000^ The alteration in the 
postage duties, which had been agreed 
to by the legislature, he calculated to 
produce 15,000^. and a regulation of 
the excise duty on leather would take 
place, which was estimated at only 
B9OOOL The whole amount of these 
duties would be 610,000, bemr 15,000 
more than the charges created by the 

After having thus stated the vari* 
ous sources of taxation, by means of 
which the Irish government proposed 
to meet the additional expenditure, 
the Chancellor of the Exchequer for 
Ireland made some interesting remarks 
on the state of that country, with 
which we shall close the present 

** The general amelioration of the 
country," ne observed, " was evident 
from the state of the exchange be- 
tween Great Britain and Ireland, 
which, notwithstanding the sum an- 
nually transmitted to absentees, was 
now much improved. The rate of 
exchange was formerly as high as 17 ; 
but in the present year it fell to five 
and one-half. Many objections had 
been made in former years, when the 
Irish budget was brought forward; 
one of these was the high charge oa 
the collection and numagement m the 
revenue. He was happy to announce, 
that a very great improvement had 
taken place in that respect." He then 
entered into a statement to shew the 
saving which had taken place in the 
ooUection of the revenue since 1811 ; 

Digitized by 




from which it appeared, that the gross . 
rerentie was now collected five per 
cent, under the rate of that year ; and 
the net revenue eight per cent* In 
the po8t*office department in particu- 
lar, the revenue was now collected at 
a much more moderate rate, and with 
much greater ease, than formerly ; the 
rate at which the net revenue of that 
department had heen collected, heing 
20 per cent less than in the preceding 

He then observed, ** that Ireland 
could not bear, in addition to the 
taxation already imposed upon her, 
those heavy direct taxes in the con- 
templation of some gentlemen, with- 
out trenching on those resources 
which were the foundation of her 
prosperity. He was favourable to an 
union of the financial departments of 
the two countries, from which he con- 
ceived mo^t beneficial results would 
be derived. He was aware that a 
more efficient controid of the depart- 
ments would be one of the first conse- 
quences ; and this would be followed 
by a dtmmution of expenditure. He 
went, however, no farther than to de- 
sire to unite the treasuries, and to 
consolidate the debts. For if gentle- 
men supposed that Ireland would af- 
ford a contribution on the same prin* 
ciples as Eng^d, even in the propor- 
tion which her growing means and in- 
creasing population might induce them 
to reckon on, they would find them- 
selves greatly mistaken indeed ; even 
those who calculated on a great in* 
crease of eeneral receipt by me ianpo- 
sition of those taxes which Great Bri« 
tain paid, were deceiving the country 
and themselves; Ireland now paid 
taxes on her consumption, from which 
great Britain was exempted — the prin* 
cipal articles of that consumption were 
of British manufacture, and of British 
produce, — and besides those articles 
which were charged with heavier im- 
posts, Ireland paid nearly 800,000/. 

per annum, on the importation of ar- 
ticles, most of them of prime necessi- 
ty, none of which were liable to any* 
internal duty in Great Britain. It 
would scarcely be contended by the 
warmest advocate for what was called 
rigorous taxation, that if the financial 
system of the two countries were to 
be in other respects assimilated, the 
Irish people were still to be subjected 
to duties such as these ; to preserve 
them, as protecting duties, would be 
in his mind the most puerile policy $ 
since it must have the effect of com- 
pelling every consumer in Ireland to 
pay more than the article of his con- 
sumption was worth, or than he ought 
to pay for it. 

** Here then there would be a loss of 
300,000/. per annum in our customs^ 
which the new system of finance mutt 
supply. But there was much more* 
The property-tax payable on the in- 
terest of the Irish debt received in this 
country would surely be conddered 
apf^icable to the Irish supply, and 
ought to be carried to the account of 
that country, which provided with 
much difficulty for its charge. The 
same result would arise respecting the 
property of Irish absentees ; at teett 
m eauity he was sure it ouffht, and 
the deduction on these two kM«men«- 
tioned grounds be at least half a mil* 
lion from the general reaources of the 
empire. On this he only estimated the 
remittancea to absentees at two mfl* 
lions, which was the amount presumed 
in the year 180i, when a committee 
of the House of Commons cncpnred 
into the state of the exchanges between 
Great Britain and Irdand-.-At the 
same time he had little doubt that the 
proportion of absentees was greatly ia* 
creased — ^the number who h*d fbUow* 
ed the seat of legislation and of go* 
vemment was necessarily gres^ and he 
was sorry to say that many who had 
not the same excuse daily added to 
those, who drew the sole resources of 

Digitized by 


Chap. 3.] 



iketr support from the country which 
they had deserted. The two heads 
«yd& he adverted to would altogether 
&iiiiUBh the supply of 'Great Britain 
hy the amount oi half a million^ while 
the dBties on articles of consumption 
impoited into Ireland» and the pro> 
dnce of the hearth and other duties* 
which he was prepared to contend we 
could not» if we introduced* or rather 
attempted to introduce* the taxes paid 
is Great Britain* any longer retain* 
wonhi shew that one million per an- 
Bum of this expected revenue which 
was to flow into the imperial treasury* 
was not in hd amy addition or increase 
to the general resources of the state. 

** He wished to apply these illustra- 
tions Dot against any measure which 
others might recommend* nor wishing 
to conoeaf from himself nor from the 
Home the efforts he should in future 
▼ears be called upon to make. But 
he adrised the sanguine calculators of 
iBcreaaed rerenue* who* be it observed* 
were not those persons best acquaint- 
ed with the means or circumstances of 
Ireland* to pause before they jumped 
to their conclusion* and to bear in re- 
collection* that all that might be add- 
ed to a financial statement was not ne« 
cntarily added to the revenue of Ire- 
hnd* or to the general receipt and in- 
come of the empire. With respect to 
the contribution of Ireland of sixteen 
odlioas and a half* he, who had to pro- 
pose measures to parliament to provide 
for it* could not but contemplate with 
a^reheasion such an increase; but* 
aware* as he must be* of the difficul- 
ties which it imposed upon himself* 
and not disguising from the committee 
what the pressure of it must ultimate- 
ly be* it would still be unfair to draw 
any comparison from the last and the 
present year of extended military ope- 
rations and increased expenditure in 
every part of the world* which had oc- 
casoned to us so heavy a charge. He 
would not advert to what that calcu- 

lation at the time of the union might 
have been ; the political circumstances 
which had since occurred could not 
then have been contemplated by any 
statesman ; but this he would say* that 
unless the circumstances of the coun- 
try were exceedingly altered* unleM- 
there was a diminution of our expen- 
diture* it was impossible for Ireumd 
to eo on at this rate of contribution* 
Paniament ought not to deceive itself, 
at least he would not lend himself to 
the deception. Did any man suppost 
that a country* the annual revenue dT 
which was only five millions* could go 
onraismglGmillioBsperannum? Ire* 
land must borrow to pay this contri- 
bution* and he who hoped that slue 
could supply the. rest with war-taxes, 
as in Great Britain* or by supplies rai- 
sed to any gpreat extent widiin the year* 
must be ignorant indeed of the circum- 
stances of the country for which he 
was undertaking to kgidate. He at 
least would* until every other means 
of supply were exhaustec^ warn par- 
liament against what* even in a finan- 
cial point of view* would be deemed fa- 
tal to the c;rowing wealth* and to that 
which could not grow without wealth, 
the future productive revenue of the 
country'— and he spoke of a country* 
of the state of which* limited as his of- 
ficial experience had been* he was yet 
not uninformed. The exertions of Ire- 
land had been Kreat.-*Great Britain 
was to raise in the present year twelve 
hundred thousand pounds by new taxel 
—Ireland was called upon to provide 
more than half that sum by new duties 
—Ireland* a country bearing no com- 
parison in point of natural or improved 
resources. In the year 1785* when Mr 
Pitt proposed new taxes to the amount 
of 900,000^. per annum* it was deem- 
ed after the duration of the Ameri- 
can contest* and the exhaustation of 
the national means* the greatest ef- 
fort which any country had ever made 
to redeem the public difficulties. Yet 

Digitized by 




in less than SO Tesrs, after a war of 
more protracted lengUi, of at least un- 
diminished sacrifice, and increased ex* 
pence, Ireland, the whole of whose an* 
nual income at that time did not ex- 
ceed the duties that the British parlia* 
inent then imposed, has undertaken to 
provide six hundred thousand pounds, 
being in the last two years a contribu- 
tion of fresh taxes, more than her 
vhole income amounted to at the time 
that the commercial propositions were 
discussed* Let me not then be told 
that Irdand withholds herself in this 
instance, or that those who are re- 
^onstbk as her ministers endeavour 
to obtain for her a partial remission, 
^hich England has not received. We 
are making £sir, and great, and gene- 
Kms exertions in the cause of Great 
Britain, a cause in the support of 
which we are not only pledged by 
compact, but which our country is, I 
admit, bound to combat for by every 
.principle of mutual interest and of 
1 safety. If that part of the 

united kingdom is not called upon to 
>^niggle beyond her strength, if her 
means are not outrun, trust me she 
will yet prove to the empire a source 
of supply and of succour, such as the 
most sanguine mind has not perhaps 
contemplated. Do not attempt to an- 
ticipate too rashly her g^wing pow- 
ers ; if you antidpte you crum tuenu 
I wish my right hon. friends may fed 
with me. \^ether I or another may 
next year fill that situation which now 
I have the honour to hold, I know not ; 
but the legislature will, I hope, act 
upon the same principles ; and I am 
confident that Great Britain wtU yet 
find in our increasing population, in 
the improved fertility of our soil, in 
our extended industry and augmented 
means, that Ireland will, in point of 
contribution, be enabled to noake not 
less exertions than in other respects 
she has already done, or dian the em- 
pire already owes to the loyalty, the 
hardihood, and the valour of her peo- 

Digitized by 






JUPntuxurf Wales,— Her Letter to the Prince R^iem.^^^Proceeimsi^ 
Parliamen* on thii Subject. 

Tbs imfertiHiate dtffercocet which 
had for tome jeart suhststed betwixt 
the Prince ana Princess of Wales had 
ccaaed to attract the notice of the 
pabl^ until, oo the 14th of January 
n thii ^ear, her Royal Highness 
was advised to address a letter to 
die Prince Regent, which speedily 
fimnd its way into the public prints. 
The letter was, by command of her 
Royal Hiffhness, transmitted by Lady 
Charlotte Campbell to the Lord Chan* 
cdkir and the £ail of Liirerpool, with 
a request that it might be laid before 
the Prince Regent* It was returned 
the next day by the Earl of Ltrerr 
pool to Lady Charlotte Campbell, 
with an intimatioB, that as all corre- 
spondence had ceased for some years, it 
was h» Royal Hi^hness's determina* 
tiM not to renew tt« The letter was 
again sent by the Princess, with an in^ 
timation that it contained matter of im* 
portance to the state ; but was once 
more returned unopened Some fur* 
ther correspondence took place on the 
subject, which it is of no importance 
to recapitulate. 

The persons who had advised the 
Prboess to this measure determined on 
another and more decided step— >the 

publicatiofi of this letter; in whidt 
her Royal Highness stated, that it 
was with great reluctance she obtnt* 
ded upon the Regent to solicit his at« 
tendon to matters which might at 
first appear rather of a personal than 
a pubhc nature. That if she conld 
think them so— if they related merely 
to herself—she should abstain from 
proceedings which might give unean* 
ness, or interrupt the more weigh* 
ty occupations of his Royal High^ 
ness. Sne should continue, in silence 
and retirement, to lead the life which 
had been prescribed to her, and con- 
sole herselJFfor the loss of that society, 
and those domestic comforts to which 
she had so lone been a stranger, by 
the reflection, that it had been deemed 
proper she should be afflicted without 
any fault of her own. But there were 
considerations, she observed, of a high* 
er nature than any remd to her own 
happiness, which rendered this address 
a duty to herself and to her daughter, 
as well as to her husband and the 
people committed to his care.— There 
was a point beyond which a guiltless 
woman could not with safety carry 
her forbearance. If her honour is in- 
vaded, the defence of her reputation is 

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no longer a matter of choice ; and it 
•ignifies not whether the attack be 
made openly, maofally, and directly, 
or by secret insinuationy and by hold- 
ing such conduct towards her as coun- 
tenances all the suspicions that malice 
can suggest. If these ought to be the 
feelings of every woman in England 
who js conscious she deserves no re- 
proach, his Royal Highness had too 
sound a judgment, and too nice a 
sense of honour, not to perceive how 
much more justly they belonged to 
the mother of his daughter— the mo- 
ther of her who is destined to reign 
over the' British empire. That du- 
ring the continuance of the restrictions 
upon his royal authority, she purpose- 
ly refrained from makme any repre* 
#entatioBs which might then augment 
the painful difficukies of his Royal 
Highnesses exalted station. At the 
expiration of the restrictions she still 
was inclined to delay taking this step, 
in the hope that she might owe the 
redress she sought to his gracious and 
unsolicited condescension. • She had 
waited in the fond indulgence of this 
expectation, until to her inexpressible 
mortification, she found that her un- 
willingness to complain had only pro* 
duced fresh grounds of complaint ; 
and she was at length compiled either 
to abandon all regard for the two 
dearest olnects which she possessed 
on earth, her own honour, and her 
beloved child, or to throw herself at 
the feet of his Royal Highness as the 
natural protector of both. That the 
aeparation which every succeeding 
month was making wider, of the mo- 
ther and the daughter, was equally in- 
jurious to both. To see hersdi cut 
off from one of the very few domestic 
cnjoymenu left her— certainly the on- 
ly one on which she set any value, 
the society of her child-^involved her 
in suchmiseryasshewell knew his Roy- 
al Highness could never inflict upon 
her if he were aware of its bitterness. 

Their intercourse had been gradually 
diminished. A single interview, week- 
ly, seemed sufficiently hard allowance 
for a mother's affections. That, how- 
ever, was reduced to a meeting once 
a fortnight ; and she had recently 
learned that even this most rigorous 
interdiction was to be still more ri- 
gorously enforced.— But while she did ' 
not venture to intrude her feelings as 
a mother upon his Roval Highnesses 
notice, she must be allowed to say, 
that in the eves of an observing and 
jealous world, this separation of a 
daughter from her mother would only 
admit of one construction— -a construe* 
tion fatal to the mother's reputation. 
That there was no less inconsiatency 
than injustice in this treatment. That 
he who dared advise his Royal High- 
ness to overlook the evidence of her in- 
nocence, and disregard the sentence of 
complete acquittal which it produced, 
or was wicked and base enough still 
to whisper suspicions, betrayed his 
duty to his Royal Highness, to his 
daughter, and to his people, if he 
counselled him to permit a day to 
pass without a fiirtner investigation 
of her conduct. That no saoi ca- 
lumniator woidd venture to recom* 
mend a measure which must speedily 
end in his utter confunon. Thus^ 
without the shadow of a charge a- 
gainst her— without even an accuser 
— nfter an enquiry that led to her am- 
ple vindication— she was vet treated 
as if she were still more culpable than 
the peijuries of her subomea tnducers 
represented her, and held up to the 
world as a mother who might not en- 
joy the society of her only child.-— 
liiat the serious, the irreparable in- 
jury which her daughter sustained 
from the plan thus pursued, had done 
more in overcoming her reluctance to 
intrude upon his Royal Highness, than 
any sufferings of her own could ac- 
complish. — The powers with which 
the constitution vests his Royal High- 

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Kts in tlie reguhtion of the royal fa- 
mAj, were admitted to be ain|^ and 
raqnestionable. Her appeal was made 
to hb ezceUent tense and liberality of 
■md in the exercise of these powers : 
and Ae willingly hoped that his pa- 
ternal feelings would lead him to ez- 
coae her anxiety in representing the 
nnbappir conseqneoces which the pre- 
sent system must entail upon her belo- 
ved chikL — ^That the diaracter of the 
Princess Chariotte would be injuied 
by the perpetual violence offered to 
her strongest affections— l>y the stu- 
ped cnre taken to estrange her from 
the society of her mother, and eren 
to intermpt all communication be- 
tween them. That all attempts to a- 
hate her attachment by forcibly se- 
the parent and child* ittbey 
d, must injure her diild's prin- 
r failed, must destroy her 
happineis.— The plan also of ezdu- 
dinsr her daughter firom all intercourse 
with the wond, appeared to her hunw 
hie judgment peculiariy unfortunate. 
She who is destined to be the sore^ 
t6ga of this great country enjoyed 
none of those advantages of society 
i^iich are deemed necessary for im- 
parting a knowledge of mankind to 
persons who have infinitely less occa- 
sion to learn that important lesson : 
aadit mMit so happen, that she should 
be called upon to c ieici se the powers 
of government, with an experience of 
the world more confined than that of 
the most private individuaL To the 
extraordinary talents with which she 
it blessed, -and which accompany a 
din^osttion singularly amiable, frank, 
aad decided, much mij^t be trusted ; 
bat beyond a certain point the great- 
est natural endowments cannot stni|^- 
gle against the disadvantM[es of cir- 
\ and situation.' Those who 

adviied his Royal Hi|;hness to delay so 
long the period oi her daughter's 
commencing her intercourse with the 
world, and for that purpose to make 

Windsor her residence, appeared not 
to have regarded the interruptions lo 
her education which this arrangemeikt 
occasioned, both by the impossibility 
of obtaining the attendance of pro- 
per teachers, and the time unavoidably 
consumed in the frequent jouroies to 
town which she must make, unless she 
were secluded from all intercourse, even 
with his Royal Highncssaod the rest of 
the royal fimily. — ^That his daughter 
had never yet enjoyed the benefit of 
confirmation, although above a year 
beyond the age at which idl the other 
branches of the royal family have par- 
taken of that solemnity w— Her Royal 
Highness concluded by expressing the 
extreme reluctance with which she ^ 
had taken this impoitant step. 

No sooner was this letter laid be- 
fore the public, than it became the 
subject of^ eager and angry discussion* 
While many approved of the letter 
in all its parts, and of die conduct 
which her Royal Highness had been 
persuaded to follow, there were others 
who seemed to entertain very differ- 
ent sentiments.— It was remarked, that 
many of the complaints nnide in the 
leUer were extremely frivolous. The 
Prince and Princess, it is true, live 
separately, on the worst terms. This 
state of things can only hate arisen^ 
it was said, from caases which the 
Prince deems sufficient ; aad were he 
to ffive «^> the government of his 
child to a person whose conduct he 
himself impeaches, he would thus con- 
fess himself to be highly criminal m 
liring in a state of separation from her 
mother. Now it is better that hisRoy* 
al Highness should conunit an error 
under an impression that he is acting 
rightly, than that he should peraeme 
in misconduct avowedly and delibe- 
rately. The most amiable may err, 
the most profligate alone can persist in 
acknowledged guilt.-«*As to the edu- 
cation of the Jnincess, the letter ob- 
served, that at Windsor masters were 

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not to be had. But it was asked* was 
the aation so poor^ or the Prince so 
ecoDonicali that masters could dot be 
a£Forded at so great a distance ? The 
youDfi^ princefs must come to London 
fike the daughters of fanners and pet- 
tr squires for the benefit of masters I 
And what masters ? For music, draw-* 
ing» dancingy French, and German ; 
that is for accomphshments which di* 
Tert the mind from solid knowledge 
and real acquirements ; which quaMy 
a gurl for a dancing-room^ but usually 
disqualify her for any thing else, and 
l^Mtof aU prepare her to govern a great 
country. Why is she not brought 
into society? exclaims her mother 1 
May not the father, it was answered, 
have been taught by eiperience the 
evils of society at an early period of 
li£e? To personages of such high 
rank the dangers of genend society 
are great in youth. Frincet are sur- 
rounded by flattery and adulation. 
They mar wdeed see all the world, 
but they luow nothing of it. Truth 
is not allowed to approach them; 
and those who minister to their pas- 
sions probably become their favour- 
ites. Who has not heard of the poi- 
son of the air of a court ? and obvious- 
ly it is a poison to which youth b 
chiefly exposed* Queen flisabeth 
was educated in seclusion. With re- 
spect to the edttcation of the Princess, 
it was asked, is she then such a child 
that she must remain at her mother's 
kmtt to receive the instructions of 
BUMters ? Is this then the personage 
who is fit to assume the reins of go<- 
^erament in the event of a vacancy, 
and to rule this great people in these 
eventful times ? She nught thus be at 
once a sovereign and apupil ; unfit to go 
ak>ne without the help of her mother, 
the nation being incapable of going on 
vrithottt the direction of the child I 

The imputations, (itwasalso<^ser- 
ved,) to which the letter alluded^ were 


made many ye^rs before The investiga- 
tion had been closed for upwards of six 
years. During all this penod her Roy- 
al Highness wa pleased to maintain 
the most profound silence on the sub- 
tect, though every motive which had 
been stat^ in her letter, as the in- 
ducement to this last step, equaDy ex- 
isted at every former moment.-— The 
only rational explanation of all this was 
said to be, that her Royal Highness 
had unfortunately got into the hands 
of counsellors, who, either frooi indis- 
cretion, or from bad motives, but cer- 
tainly not vnih any regard to their 
royal client hersdf, to the royal fami- 
ly, or to the country, were determined 
to drag the whde of this cause from 
the obscurity in which, prudence oa 
the one hand, and magnanimity on the 
other, had buried it, into the broad 
day of public investigation^— 'If it 
were not resolved to bring this matter 
to an ultimate enquiry, vdiy, it was 
asked, should the letter have been 
written, as it was known to have been, 
by a lawyer i Why was it officially 
transmitted with copies, duplicates, 
and all circumstances of solemnity^ 
through the Pnnoe Regent's pubhc 
servants— -the ministers of the coun- 
try ? And why, at last, when the 
eenerosity of the Prince and the pru- 
dence of his ministers declined to re- 
vive these discussions— why vras it 
with so much previous preparation, 
vnth such preliininary pomp, ushered 
into the world ^ 

With respect to the insinuations in 
the letter, it was remarked, that the 
advisers of her Royal Highness diould 
have explained to her, that the matter 
would not end there— that other con- 
sequences might and must result from 
it— that here was not a defiance which 
could be thrown out with impunit]^— - 
that the grave charge of subornation 
of perjury, to destroy her repntatkni] 
would not be overlooked— that if thi 

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Crap. 40 



fmet Regent had studioutly main* 
tmtd a aikace of fifteen yetrs, upoa 
ai the imluippj differences between 
tkeilnftnoiis personages in qnefltion« 
ht had now another doty to perform 
—dm! sdence would he no loneer 
ddkacy to aoy of the parties — That 
dumesaod inatnuations could not be 
MCiBaUid to be broi^t against him 
reply or refatation-— that he 
t aot be accused of improper treat- 
i towards his daughter, both with 
Rspect to her education and her inter- 
* wtth tbe world and her mother 
i that any attempt which injuds- 
I rnnasrWiifn might make to weak- 
m the aftcdooof t&daufl^ter forthe 
fitherymwtbemetandd^ted. The 
admen of the Princess called for fmv 
dbercBquiry. They said «< that a day 
oagkt not to pass without further in- 
testigatkm of ner conduct. *^ If they 
were so amaons to have an enquiry, 
said their oppooents, there could be no 
leaaon far imdng their request. 

Her Royal Highness alluded to the 
itaalt of the enquiry before the noble 
brdi who had formerly inTesdgated 
Wr caaey and appealed to the ^ evi- 
deaoe of her mnocence" and << the 
OM Bpl e te acquittal which it produced.'' 
Upon the point of ** ample Tindica* 
tJotT aad « complete acquittal,'' the 
report, said her opponents, does << ta 
tile tlmrand umanmtjm judgmeni of 
llr emmmitdonerM^^ ac^t her Royal 
Hi g hncja of actual crimmality ; but her 
loyal Highness, they added, betrayed 
«t iaipnidence m calling for a iur* 
ttffiBveat^atios, not that there exist* 
cd a shadow of reason for apprehends 
■r diat a aecood enquiry would be 
Bdy to attach aoT gfNiter stain to her 
rhsiBUu tlam haa been occasioned by 
the fiestt hut because there were other 
sahasdmate circumstances, the detail 
•f wUdi dionldf upon every principle 
sf delicacy, be withheld from the 

The young Priocessi it was remark- 

ed, was not seventeen* an age at ¥^udi 
her studies must he supposed to be 
still going fbrward-^But her mother 
seemed dkairous that those studies 
should be interrupted, in order that 
her Royal Highness might mix in 
societies where she might acquire a 
knowledge of mankind. What socie- 
ties it was ashed \ Balk and routs ? 
•—Is there much valuable knowledge 
to be obtained in such quarters^mi^ 
health for the body or the mind? 
Would her mother advise her to fol- 
low the example of some other ladies, 
and obtain a knowledge of mankind 
by attending chemical and anatomi. 
callectures? Would she have had her 
perfect herself in the accomf^hments 
of dancing and ^>eaking, by passing 
her nights at the operas or the theatres 
—or improve her judgment of the 
powers of harmony, by a nearer inter- 
course vmh celebratod smgers thaa 
from the box to the stage \ Was her 
rojral grandfather's education prosa- 
cttted m tbe way now recommended i 
Assuredly it was not; aad yet no 
monarch ever sat upon the throne with 
moreabihty, more ju^ment, and more 
knosidedge of the constitution and of 
the laws of the coontry; 

As to the bst point urged in the 
letter, it was remarked, that the rite 
of confirmation is undoubtedly an im- 
pressive and salutary one; but the 
most rigid divines have never consider- 
ed it as essential to the welfare of the 
soul ; and in the church of Enghmd 
it is no sacrament. Who, then, can 
believe that it was really felt by the 
Princess of Wales aaa personal grievu 
ance requiring remonstrance, that the 
princess Chanotte, her daughter^ had 
not yet been confirmed? But the 
statement, that «< all the other branches 
of the royal &mily have been confirm- 
ed when younger than the Princesa 
Charlotte now is,'' was not correct. 
The Prince her fither tras not con- 
firmed until he was near eighteen 

Digitized by 




years of age, nor was the king her 
grandlather^ Where then is the jus- 
tice of complaining becanse the Prin* 
cess Charlotte has not been confirmed 
at an earlier age ? 

The letter was eiridently not the 
production of die Princess of Wales ; 
and there was a good deal of bad 
taste, it was remanded, in so much 
parade and afiectation of maternal 
tenderness and domestic feelings when 
mrj one must have been convinced 
that it was not a mother who herself 
expressed her own feelings, but some 
persons empbyed to male out a case, 
and who talked of sympathies and 
feehngs with all the cold and canting 
commonplace of thorough-bred meta- 
phy8icians.<^Why should the Prince 
be the only father in the empire 
whose management of his child was 
to be criticised by the public ? Why 
is he not to be permitted to judge 
how muchy or what company sne 
should see; what accomplishments 
she ought to learn ; what preceptors 
it is proper that she should have^— and 
when her proficiency in her studies 
may render their further superinten- 
dence unnecessary ? If it had been al- 
bdged that the healthy or the cha- 
racter, or the edocationy of the pre- 
sumptive heiress of the crown had 
been neglected, the public would have 
lek a laudable interest in having such 
neglect remedied; but it was too 
much to say that any person had a 
i^ht to enquire why the youne Prin- 
cess went into company so littk or so 
much— why she had, or had not been 
confirmed; what progress she made 
in her education; what visits she 
should receive and pay ; thus attempt- 
to pry into all those little details of 
paternal care and domestic duties 
fi^ch the letter of the advisers of the 
Princess of Wales obtruded on public 
notice^ to the astonishment and dis- 
gust of every father and mother in 

the country— The paternal kindness 
of the Prince to his daughter, his care 
of her health, of her Mucation, and 
her principles^ had long been a theme 
of applause} not only to those very 
persons who were now endeavourtngr 
to insinuate the contrary, but to tlie 
whole nation ; and the publication o£ 
the letter, lamenti^le as it was on 
many other accounts, had, in one re- 
spect at least, proved not unsatitfaic- 
tory; as it brought forth into fuU 
view the parental feeling which his 
Royal Highness the Pnnce Regent 
had evinced tovrards his amiable and 
illustrious child, and the credit which 
the cultivated mind and affectionate 
heart of that child did to the unwea- 
ried exertions of her royal fadier— 
Such were the reflections made on the 
letter which the Princess had been ad^ 
vised to publish. 

The msbuadons, however, which 
that letter contained, were of such a 
nature that further enquiry was held 
indispensable ; and the rrince Regent 
accordingly referred the whole msit- 
ter to a commission, composed of 
the dignitaries of the church, and the 
high officers of the law, who, after 
various meetings, and much defibera* 
tion, made a formal report on the 
subject. This report stated, that* 
after a full exammation of the do- 
cuments, the commissioners were of 
opinion, that, under all the circunti- 
stances of the case, it was highly fit 
and proper, with a view to the w^^ 
fare of her Royal Hi^ness the Prin- 
cess Charlotte, in which were equally- 
involved the happiness of his Royal 
Highness in his parentid and royal 
character, and the most important in* 
terests of the state, the intercourse be- 
tween her Royal Highness the Prin- 
cess of Wales and l^r Koyal Highneaa 
the Princess Charlotte, should continue 
to be subject to regulation and re^ 
straint.^-That the motives by whidi 

Digitized by 


Cbap. 4w3 



\m Rpysl HighneM had been actuated 
ii the poatpooement of the confirma- 
DOB of the PiiaceM ChaHotte were 
an«t laudable, at it appeared by a 
aatement under the hand of her Ma- 
jtttf die Queen, that his Rojal High- 
aen had conformed in this respect to' 
the dedared wiU of his Majesty, who 
had been pleased to direct, that snch 
ceremony should not take phce till the 
ftinoesa should have completed her 
Ifilh year— The commissioners also 
Bsdced aome espressions in the letter 
•( htr Royal Highness the Princess 
of Wales, which might posnbly be 
coBStnied aa implying a charge of 
too aerioua a nature to be passed 
ofer without obsermtion* They re* 
fcncd to the words, ^ suborned tra* 
dnoen." As this expression, from 
the manner in which it was intro* 
duced^ unghi perhaps be liable to be 
nusvnderatood, (although it might be 
iraposaible to suppose that it could 
bave been $o iotended) to have re* 
ference to some part of the conduct 
of hn Royal Highness, they felt it 
their bounden duty not to omit this 
opportunity of declaring that the do* 
ci i uenta laid befi>re them aflforded the 
■ost ample proof, that there was not 
dtt digoteat foundation for such an 

This report was communicated to 
the Princesa by Lord Sidmouth. Her 
Koyal Hiehness was immediately ad- 
vised to address herself to the Lord 
Chancellor, and to the Speaker of the 
House of Conunons. in her letters 
to these dtsdngmshed personages, she 
ttated, that the rroort which she had 

C received wa» of such a nature that 
Royal Highness was persuaded no 
penoo could read it without consider* 
mg it aa conveyine aspersions upon 
her; and although their vagueness 
lendered it imposnble to discover pre* 
dsdhr what was meant, or even what 
the had been charged vrith, yet as the 
Priacess felt conscions of no effimce 

whatever, she thouj^ht it due to her* 
self, to- the illustnous houses with 
which she was connected by blood, 
and by marriage, and to the people 
amonr whom s£e held so distinguished 
a rank, not to acqdosce for a mooKnt 
under any imputations afiecting her 
honour* That she had not been per* 
mitted to know upon what evidence 
the members of the privy council pro* 
ceeded, still less to be heard in her 
defence. She knew only br commoo 
rumour of the enquiries wnich ther 
had been carrying on, until the resutt 
of those enouiries was communicated 
to her, and she had no means of know* 
ing whether the numbers acted as a 
body to whom she could i^peal for 
redras, at least for a hearing, or only 
in their individual capacities, as per- 
sons selected to make a report upon 
her conduct* She was therefore com* 
polled to throw herself upon the wis* 
oom and justice of paiiiament,and to 
desire that the fiiUest investigatioB 
might be instituted into her whole 
conduct during the period of her re* 
sidence in this coimtry* She feared 
no scrutiny, however strict, provided 
she might be tried by impartial judges 
known to the constitution, and in the 
firir and open manner whkh the law 
of the land prescribes* 

When the letter which had been 
received by the Speaker was read to 
the House of Commons, iir Whit- 
bread called on Lord Castlereagh to 
dedare whether it was his intention 
to submit any proposition to the 
House on the subject* His lordship 
answered, that he wotild be ready^ 
painful as the subject was, to give 
every proper explanation whcm a fit 
opportunity occurred* 

On the 5th of Mait:h, Mr Cochrane 
Johnstone made a motion on this sub- 
ject. He called upon the House to 
enUr into resolutions declaring, that 
the commission in 1806 to Lords £r* 
skine^ Grenville, Spencer, and Ellen* 

t » 

Digitized by 



EDINBURGH ANNU^I, REGISTER* 1813. [Cjiajp. 4^ 

borbugb, to enquire into the charges, 
agamst the Princess of W^s* was il- 
legal-^that the acquittal of her Kaj^ 
liOghness by that commission was in* 
iralid» becauie if they had power to 
acquit* they might also have con* 
demned— that the Princess wa^ there-^^ 
fore not legally acquitted of the' 
charges brought against her* and that 
this tincertaiat)r might endanger* at 
aome future period* the succession to 
the crown. He then moved an ad- 
dress to the Prince Regent, that the 
whole documents connected with the 
enquiry of 1806 should be laid before 
the House* 

> In support of the motion it was ob- 
served* that a commission had been 
granted by the kin^ in 1806* to four 
noble lords, GrenviUe* Spencer* Er- 
skine* and EUenborough, to examine 
into certain accusations which had 
been preferred affainst the Princess of 
Walei. That the report made by the 
^mmissioners contained the most un« 
qualified opinion, that the charge pro* 
jterred by Sir John and Lady Dou- 
glas* against the Princess of Wales* 
of havug been delivered of a child in 
the year 1802* was utterly destitute 
4>f truth* That the birth, and real 
ynother of the child said to have been 
bom of the Princess* had been prove4 
J>eyond all possibility of doubt* The 
jreport concluded with some objec- 
.tioBS made by the commissioners to 
.the manners of the Princess. — That a 
letter dictated by Lord Eldon, Mr 
Perceval* and Sir Thomas Palmer, 
.though signed by the Princess of 
Wales, purporting to be written by 
her Royal Highness to the king, on 
.the, 9th of October 1806, as a pro- 
test against the report of the commit- 
.sioners* contabed a formal and elabo- 
rate criticism upon the nature of the 
commission under which her conduct 
had been reviewed ; asserted, in the 
most unqualified terms her own inno~ 
cence* and desrcibed the charges of 

her accusers as oririnatine in a foal 
<;onspiracy* In thisTetter the jPrincess 
of Wales threw herself* and the honour 
of her family* on the justice of the 
kiuff— her honour and her life bein^ 
at the mercy of the malice of her ac- 
cusers.— She complained of the ex* 
parte crimination* and of the manner 
and waj in which the charges were 
credited*<^That after an interval of 
painful suspence* the duke of Kent 
announced to her Royal Highness the 
near approach of two attomies to take 
away oy warrant* half of her family^ 
in order to examine them as witneseea 
to a charge made against her* The 
only request she made on this occa- 
sion was, that the J>uke of Kent 
should remain in the room with her 
till her servants were gone, for fear 
she should be suspect^ of holding 
any conversation with them.— That 
the charjge brought against the Prin- 
cess betore that tribunal by Sir John 
and Lady Douglas was nothing short 
of treason ; that if the commissioners 
had power to acquit her Royal High* 
ness of the crime charged, they had 
equally the power to convict her* and 
what was the state of that country in 
which such a thing was even possible ? 
That the noble lords had no autho« 
rity to firive a judgment on the occa- 
sioa— >toey had no right to pronounce 
an acquittal* for they had no right 
to find a verdict of guilty.— As a 
question of law* the matter was left 
as the conmiissioners found it.-~But 
wliat became of Sir John and Lady- 
Douglas? They still persisted in th^ 
same story ; but if all they maintained 
were so notoriously false, why were 
they not prosecuted ?— That no pro* 
ceedings of the late privy cound^ ex- 
cept the report, had been transmitted 
to the Princess of Wales — that copies 
of all the examinations ought to he 
given to her ; and it was the duty of 
ministers to commimicate to the Prin- 
cess of Wales the fresh informations 

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the? bad taiiau That the case ought 
to he tried by the whole privy coun- 
dl$ and after the discussion which 
tfe Princess had proToked, if she 
dkooild then be injured she would have 
bcxscSf akne to blame. 

A«iBSt the motion it was argued* 
ihattte mode of proceeding adopted 
bj ib snpporters was altogether ab- 
tcnL The first resolution wasy in fact* 
SBBBpported by any proof. The se- 
cond resolution called for those very 
pipcrsy as matter of information, on 
mdi the first resolution was founded. 
The only object of the information de- 
mmded, was to persuade the House 
that soch serious doubts existed as to 
At saccesskm to the throne, as requi- 
red the interference of parliament. It 
voe needless to enter mto any detail- 
ed cnqmiy as to the powers of the 
priyy comidl acting as a tribunal in 
their proceedings on this subject } but 
it was evident, that- they were fully 
competeot to eoquire, whether there 
Were, or wtit not, sufficient grounds 
sf chargne for putting the Princess of 
Wales on her defence. The present 
however, did not ^o to the 
of settling the question, whe- 
any such proceedings were, or 
not, necessary. But if the com- 
oners were not coiapetent to de- 
cide ^on the.charges against her Royal 
, the House of Commons was 
not the proper tribunal £or 
^ on such a question. If every 
in die conduct of the Princess of 
Wdes, from the highest degree of guilt 
Ibm to the lowest levity, were to be 
WiiiilLH J, that House was not, cer- 
irialy, the place where such matters 
Asdd be discussed..— That if any un- 
disputes existed between the 
of the royal family, a discus- 
ia the House ci Commons could 
osly to augment the evil and widen 
4e breach. The only solid ground, 
Atiefbre, on which parliament could 
pooeedy wa$ this,^— that doubts were 

created as to the -s^ccesuon of the 
crown. But in the present case, there 
was not the smallest doubt entertain* 
ed upon that subject. The commis- 
sioners in 1806, from their known cha- 
racter and high legal qualifications^ 
Were certainly fit persons to decide 
upon that question ; and they had de- 
aded ; and no doubts remained on 
theirminds that required parliamentary 
interposition. They did not make an 
enquiry into the weight of the evi- 
dence of Lady Douglas, as compared 
or contrasted with that of other wit- 
nesses; but they had decided, that 
they had traced the whole history of 
the child so completely and satisfac- 
torily, that no possible doubt could 
remain that it was not bom of the 
Princess of Wales, but of another wo* 
man, named Sophia Austin. Nor, in- 
deed, did this decision rest only on 
their report, for the question was af- 
terwards referred to confidential ser- 
vants of his majesty, who gave a so- 
lemn judgment, confirming the report 
of the first commissioners. The sup- 
posed doubt respecting the succession 
was therefore rebutted by the autho- 
rity of the commissioners of the first 
cabinet ; and also by that of the sub- 
sequent cabinet, to whom the matter 
was referred, and who confirmed the 
judgment. If any doubt remained, a 
case might exist as to the question of 
succession, which it might be the duty 
of parliament to examme ; but aftier 
all these authorities, would it be 'ra- 
tional for parliament to interfere ? 
Would not such interference rather 
serve to create doubts, where no doubts 
existed, and give countenance to sus- 
picions contrary to the repeated decla- 
rations of all parties, that no case 
whatever had been made out to require 
any such interference on the part of 
parliament ?— It was perfectly true, that 
there had been no prosecution entered 
against Lady Douglas ; her eridence 
was tat^en by the commissioners in the 

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ditcht!^ of their dutj ; aod it Bhovld 
have bMn tUtedy ia candour, that the. 
first cabiaet recommended that no pro- 
ceeding should be instituted, unle^ the 
crown lawyers deemed it advisable to 
prosecute Lady Douglas for peijury* 
A case was laid before themi an4 
though they were latisfied at to the 
peijury. they nevertheless faw diQ-^ 
culties in the way pf establishing it by 
legal evidence, and therefore t^sy ^id 
Dot advise a prosecution.— The pnesent 
cabinet had acted deliberately and con* 
acientiously in the business, and had 
given 'their opinion, that there were 
no reasons why her Royal Highness 
should not be admitted to the presence 
of the sovereign, agreeeably to the re- 
commendation of the former cabinet.— 
It had been stated, with a marked em- 
phasis, tl\at Lady Douglases evidence 
was given by conunand of his Royal 
Jiighness the Prince Regent. In tnis 
matter the Prince Regent followed the 
advice of Lord Thurfow, which was, 
to have the evidence reduced to wri- ' 
tinfl|> for the purpose of submitting it 
to tegai consideration. Then his Royal 
Highness Mi it to be his duty to com- 
municate the circumstance to his royal 
father, with whom, and with whose 
cabinet, and not with his Royal High- 
ness himself, the whde affair had from 
that time remained.^There was no 
liecessity for pursuing the subject of 
tiiis discussion any further. It could 
not be properly brought forward, ex- 
*cept on the presumption that some 
doubts existed relative to the succes- 
aion of the crown. But no such doubts 
did exist. Parliament, by acceding to 
8uch a motion as that now proposed, 
would become an instrument m grati- 
fying that taste for calumny, which 
was so preralent at the present mo- 
ment— —The motion was negatived 
without a division. 

In consequence of the measures 
adopted by the Princess of Wales, 
and of the discussions excited in the 

House of Commons, the whple pro* ' 
ceedings of 1806, including the evir 
dei^ce of the witnesses, soon appea^red \ 
in the public prints. This result yra^ 
it once disagreeable and unexpecte4 ! 
to benelf j^ tp her advisers. Sir. 
John and Lady Dovfl^s^ the chief witr 
nesses against her Royal Highness, 
whose evidence had been entirely dis- 
credited by the co.mipissioners ot } SOS^ 
ventured stijl jtp maiptain the truth of 
what they hid asserted on oath. They 
accordingly presented a petition to thl^ 
House of Commons, praying ^at they 
might be agam examined before a pom- 
petent tribunal, that if the falsehoo(| 
of their evidence were established, they 
^ould be punished with the pains of 
penury. This circumstance, together 
witn the public^ons alluded to, and 
some rumours as to a further exax^ina* 
tion of L^y Douglas, induced l/Lr 
Whjtbre^id ^o bring the subject once 
more before the I^use, in the shape 
of a motion for an address to the Prino^ 
Regent for the punishment of the per- 
sons who had contributed towards this 
insult oo th^ roy^l fiapily and outrage 
on the public P^pr^li* 

The supporters of the motion obser- 
▼ed, that her Royal Highness was tvlly 
acquitted from eyery imputation of en- 
ia&inality. In these circumstances, not- 
withstanding the family divisions and 
differences, notvrithstapding the un- 
happy transactions which had occur- 
rea, notwithstanding all that had been 
then brought before the public, to the 
great griefof every thinking man in the 
land, yet by judicious advice* to both 
parties, by conciliation and submission 
from the one, and by affection and in- 
dulgence from the other, a happy pe- 
riod might have been put to these un- 
pleasant and painful transactions; The 
malady^ was not at its crisis till lately ; 
and kindness would have healed both 
it and the public feeling, so long and 
so cruelly lacerated. Can it be true 
^eni it was asked, that those persons. 

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I in enreti tecou at per-} 
degraded witneBteSy have 
kfliMui examiprd ? That from the 
ISdi m February* down to the period 
when die debate took phice, in which 
Sir Jolni Doo^as and his ladj were 
tcTflMd j er jmw and degrade witness* 
tSy mminatiaDs had been going for- 
wmi of LaAj I)ioilglas» in the pre- 
•cBceofher buriMind» asa credibkand 
kaonrdJe witndn i Were the kind's 
■iaiiters dins darkly searching for the 
fcmeij of eiridence tkat might de« 
die ianocent ? Was this the mode 
a&ars of state of such mo< 
e conducted ? Did the Lord 
of Great. Britain lend him* 
dF to tliote sinister and obscnre pro^ 
cecfiags ? itoif anxious soever ever^ 
sae m^bt baire been^ after the pro* 
ceedmgt on m former aight» to adrise 
a ttni&ed aporofllcli. by her Royal 
Hagaatm to the Regent, under the 
cDOKMMttiiesa of acquitted innocence» 
m tbe iippe that slje would be met by 
dK FriDce iHth feelbgs of ilffection 
aid hipdiiess, vet after the disclosure 
tif sBcb proceedings^ it was impossible 
Att soco advice s&;>old be given. Un- 
4r all these drcomstances, and after 
^bpae of a vr^ek from the period of 
jhti ifcaiiiiliniv whereiii it was admit- 
tod»4K^ hands, that the Princess oJF 
iVdsa was compktely acquitted of all 
daaiuiBty whatever, in two newspa- 
[joln ttnnWameoqsly» ap|>ear the depo- 
■iaas«f Sir John and Lady Dou^as, 
iiaK CeAnBDoy had been so strong- 
h^peobacedL Since this period» and 
iMethe dqpositioQ of Lady Douglas 
^ dc K v eied , various publications of 
faaBKDts had been nme in papers, 
ia Ae habit of containin^^ expres* 
Munpt disagreeable to ministers, nor 
Vff aawdcofae at Cariton-house.— - 
Dfoaaae of these newspapers, called 
dbe Mining Herald, the public might 
Ik| far whoever saw at the head of 
Ast paper tbe crest of his royal hwh- 
iBH co&s^cuoiisly displayed|-«*wno* 

ever knew the habits of the reverend 
proprietor of that paper,— whoever 
knc^ that the reverend proprietor had 
been recently distinguished by honours 
and by church promotiim out of tbe 
vsual course of appointments of that 
kind,— -whoever knew all this, and read 
the scandalous publications wMch had 
recently appeared in the Morning He- 
raid, must condude that thev were not 
disagreeable in a certain high quarter* 
Through this cbannel^ it was saidf 
these dis^sting docundents, by which 
the pubfic morals had been tainted^ 
were issued— Tbat after two cabinets 
had declared her Royal Highness guilt* 
less, it should be thought necessary to 
reprint that testimony, which before 
its publication to the world had been 
acknowledged to be &lse and peijuredf 
was surprising. After the evidence 
of Ladv Douglas, followed in a train 
all the disgustmg documents, the ^se- 
hood of which was known and acknow- 
ledged^ and which^ abominable as they 
were^ had been put into the shape ef a 
volume, bearing the name of the late 
Mr PercevaU by whom the press is 
said to have bmi corrected. That 
right honourable gentleman thought 
the Princes^ of Wales so grossly and 
so ffrievously injured, that for the sake 
of her vindication it was necessarr he 
i^ould submit these painful details to 
tne people of England and the world ; 
and be consequently prepared a com- 
ment iq>on it, to prove the falsehood 
of the story, and to expose the villainy 
by which it had been raised. Now^ 
ho wever, when Mr Perceval was dead|«-» 
when her royal hic^hness had no advi- 
sers remaining^— >wnen a series of years 
had elapsed, during which the public 
had been kept in a state of profound 
ignorance of fiscU which they sought 
to know ¥dth ei^r curiosity^— wnen 
the Princess had been declared inno- 
cent and blameless by two cabinets, 
and the witnesses against her were ac- 
knowledged to be perjured and degra- 

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ded> then, and not till then, was the 
public eye polluted by these unfound- 
ed, these indecent statements. What 
was the object of the late Mr Perceval 
in wishing to submit these documents 
to the examination of the public i To 
prove the innocence of the Princess of 
Wales. What was the object of their 
publication now ? To prove the guilt 
of her Royal Highness. After so many 
declarations of her innocence from a^ 
sides, these papers were brought for- 
ward to deceive the public, and to lead 
to a base conclusion of her euilt. Mr 
Perceval would have given them to the 
world to protect injured innocence, and 
now they were adduced in order to ca* 
tumniate the very womaii of whom he 
was the adviser, defender, and friend. 
What woman was ever before placed 
in such a situation ? Was it possible 
for matters to rest here ? Was not t 
decision imperiously called for ? The 
sooner it came the better^ would it be 
for the crown and for the peoplf^. For 
how many long years had her Royal 
Highness suffered under surmises, insi- 
nuations, and accusations i It was eleven 
years since they were cortntenced, and 
she had not yet passed through thife 
fiery ordeal. To whom was the dei. 
lay to be attributed ? The Princess of 
Wales had at all perio^= loudly clainv- 
cd public enquiry. In 180j8, bythe 
mdvice of Mr Pefceval and Sir Tho- 
mas Plomer, she denumded a fair and 
open triaL It was grant^ed. In 1815 
she had again thrown h^self upon the 
Prince Regent and upon parliament, in- 
sisting upon her innocence, and demand- 
ing to be tried. Durinflr all this time 
•she had been deprived~of the comforts 
to which her rank and situation entitle 
her, and excluded from almost every 
social intercourse, and from aH mater- 
nal endearments. She wrote a letter 
to the House of Commons, claiming— 
mK mercy, not compassion, not prct- 
te^tion, but— justice. ** Try mfe,*' 
•he said, ** before a tribunal competent 

to decide, and let that decision be fi« - 
ml.** ** No," said the ministers, ** you 
shall' be tried, not before a pubHc tri- - 
bunal, but before the tribunal of the 
public. Everyman, woman, and child 
m the empire shall read the evidence • 
against you.'* She demanded, ** Let • 
me be judged by my peers, and if 
^ilty, let me be condemned and siif* 
fer." «No," replied the ministerSt 
•* you shall be tried by self-elected 
nines, not of your peers, in every ale- 
house in the Kingdom. ' Your judges 
shall be the most ignorant of numldnd» 
incapable of drawing legal inferences 
of guilt or innocence. We will expose 
you, degraded, unprotected, to th^ 
view of the curious multitude; yott 
shall be stripped to the eyes of a gazing 
worid." " Good God !*» exclaimed m 
redoubted orator, (MrWhitbread) in 
commenting on this 8ubject,<<isthis the 
way that justice is administered in Eng* 
land, the countij that boasts so mtich 
of the purity of its laws, and the ex- 
cellence of its establishments ? Is this 
the mode in which innocence is mado« 
tained against the poisoned shafts of 
talnmny r' — After the decision of the 
Jour commissioners appointed by the 
hing to make the necessary enquiries, 
and report thereon,— after the most 
unequivocal vindication of the Princess 
of Wales, as communicated in their 
reportj — it appeared that a fresh exa- 
mination took place into the evidence 
which had been completely disregard- 
ed and discredited. This new enquiry 
was managed by a noble person, who 
seemed desirous to give force to that 
which had been previously deemed of 
no validity. When the vntness whom 
he had summoned before him said, •« I 
never believed the report, I treated it 
as the infamous lie of the day," what 
was the conduct of that noble person ^ 
In a' very significant manner, ne con- 
veyed a notion to the person examined* 
that he (the noble lord) still did give 
credit to the report. He shook bis 

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Ixad most 8igiiificaiitly» and appeared 
to disbdieve the strong testimony of 
the witness whom he Ym called before 
Inm. If persons who are the most 
eidighteiied retain their prejudices, and 
no means are left for rindication, how 
it innocence to be maintained ? <*Does 
it not become as as nien/' said the 
ontor abtady alluded to, ** as lovers 
of jttttice^ as representatives of the 
people, as supporters of the dignity 
mid tti^iKty of the throne, when sncn 
crimes are attributed to one so near it, 
to bring the matter to a decision? Is it 
not our bounden duty t6 seek a speedy 
determination, for the sake of the go- 
Temmg authorities of the country i It 
it not the Princess of Wales alone who 
18 shocked by such proceedings* Is 
not the Prince of Wales, her natund 
pttitector, shocked ? Are not the mo- 
rafity, the Tntue, and the loyalty df 
the people shocked? Is not the mo- 
naftm^ itself interested in the dctej*- 
mtnation ? Yes, we nre all, both indivi- 
dually and collecttvely, ihocked and 
^affected in the deeoe$t and tenderest 
points. It is totuiy; impossible that 
the matter can rest in its present state* 
It is impossible, virhether the rights 
and interests of the crown or of the 
subject are considered, that the matter 
can be deferred any longer* If the 
sentence of acquittn which has been 
p ro n o un ced, is to be'^ up as a bar 
against that critis which appears abso- 
lutely necessanr, can-it be denied that 
there are people who, in oppositibn to 
die assertion of the innocence of the 
Piincets of Wales, are at all' times 
ready to shake their heads, and who 
cannot help thinking that there is 
tibmetbing in it f It is hizh time that 
a thorough scrutiny should be insti- 
tuted. It is high time that eveiy cir- 
cnmstance, hint, and suggestion should 
be sifted in every way that human in- 
genuity can devise, for the purpose of 
doing justice, not to the Princess of 
Wales only, bat to aR who ane impli- 

cated in the transaction*^— ^In what 
situation, it was asked, is the succes- 
]rion to the throne placed ? LadyDou* 

Slas had been again examined as a cred- 
ible witness, not only by a magistrate^ 
but she had been treated as such by 
the Lord Chancellor of England. The 
evidence of Lady Douglas had gone 
farther than to inferences from what 
she had heard in her conversations with 
the Princess of Wales ; for she had 
positively swOm, that, to her know* 
ledge, the Princes! tof Wales was not 
only with child, but was delivered of a 
male child* If so, the Princess of 
Wales was in imminent dan^r. If so, 
the Princess Charlotte was involved in 
danger. But, what was stiU more 
striking, Lady Douglas herself perw 
sisted, and olEered in her petition to 
maintain, at every risk, the troth of 
her depositions. Why had nothinj^ 
been done to ascertain the truth of this 
story ? For if true, this male chik)^ 
"and not the Princess Chariotte, must 
inherit the throne, unless it could be 
■proved that he was the offspring of an 
adulterous intercourse. On what au^ 
thority did the acquittal of the Princess 
of Wides stand ? On this :~Lord £1- 
don, as a lawyer, said, the greater part 
of the evidence viras satis&tordy dis^ 
proved, and as for the remainder, all 
men utteriy discredited 4t. But these 
'mysterious examinations stiH tontinu^ 
ed, and her Royal Highness found, 
that there was not, even in this coun- 
try, any tribunal before which her 
guih or innocence could be brought to 
MMie* If she resolved to quit this 
country, she had now no father to go 
to J nor had she even her father's 
country to afford her an asylum. Soon 
after tne period when these examina- 
tions had been conducted with so much 
acrimony against his beloved daughter, 
he had paid the forfeit of his life at the 
battle of Jena* She had, however, the 
consolation to know that her father bad 
received all the papers c^lative to the 

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inve»tigatKm of her csaduct, and bad 
expressed his djing conTictioo of his 
daughter's innoceocc-^What protec- 
tioo» then, had the Priocess of Wales i 
She had a right to that of her bus- 
bandy and of the law. Would the 
House of Commons deprive hereof the 
latter ? Her husband had withdrawn 
from her Royal Highness his protec- 
tion I and was the House to with- 
hold, from her its protection also ? She 
bad indeed her noble mother here^-^be 
had her bosom to retire to. She had 
also the countenance and aflfection of 
her. gallant brother, but he had not the 
same means of affording her protec- 
tion* She therefore called on the 
House of Commons*— the representa- 
tives of the people of England— to be- 
come the protectors of an unoceptt 
traduced, and defenceless strang^r-<-^ 
the mother of thtir future queen. ! 

The whole strain of the harangues 
made on this occasion^ evinced the em- 
barrassment to whichi br their own 
foUf 9 the advisers of her Ro jal High- 
ness, had reduced that illustrious per- 
8(nuige* To themi in fact, all her pre- 
,sent misfortunes were to be ascribed ; 
.with them had originated all the in- 
decent publications of which the^r so 
loudly complained; and disappoint- 
ment and vexation now marked all 
their proceedings.— In replying to their 
.angry exfostiuationsi it was asked* 
.what was it these champions of the li- 
berty of the press required parliament 
40. do for the purpose of vmdicating 
the Princess of Wales from aiipersions 
which had been cast upon her ? Why» 
ttrvljf at the distance of about a fort- 
night to punish the proprietors of two 
newspapers for having published the 
whole evidence on a matter of such 
interest to the country. The proposi- 
tion was to bring two printers to the 
bar of the House, or to agree to an 
address, which would occasion their 
prosecution by the Attomey*General, 
for having published certain deposi- 

tions after all the leading docnmeiita 
were already before the public. It 
was true that these disclosures cofild 
not be iustified ; but those who first 
began uie publicatioif of such papers 
were the parsons to be censuitd, as 
every one knew that the other docu- 
ments were not.confined to the recesses 
of the state, but had found their waj* 
into the hands of individuals. If one 
set of persons disclosed a part of thos^ 
documents, it was not to be expected 
that others would suffer the remain- 
der to be concealed. It could aever 
be allowed to one party, in a matter 
of this description, to publish what 
would lead to false conclusions affects 
ing. public men, without an effort be- 
ing made to give a more fieur view o£ 
the sublect. The public knew where 
the disclosures began, and when the^ 
were once commenced, a strong neces- 
sity arose for going on. But did the 
pretended friends of the Princess really 
think they could persuade the House 
to arrest those printers i Was it not a. 
proof how littb the powers of parli^- 
meat were odculated to meet this suh^ 
tect, when an honourable gentleman 
having given notice of a grave motion 
ibr the prosecution of Ladv Douglas 
for perjury, suddenly abandoned mat 
intention^— and after entering into a 
lone argument, on the Question — after 
maEing his own partial comments on 
the documents, instead of endeavour- 
ing to punish Lia4y Douglas, ended 
with a motion perfectly ridiculous I 
The motion was only introduced, in 
fact, to give an opportunity of making 
. speeches. From the com-se of the ar- 
gument it mi^ht be supposed, that in- 
stead of desiring some proceedings to 
be taken with respect to the Princess 
of Wales, the mover was anxious to 
shew that there vras no necessity for 
any interference of parliament on the 
subject— Parliament could not enter- 
tain the subject, either vrith a view to 
the happiness of the parties concern. 

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cdbOr to the preservatkm of tbe traa* 
mKif of tbe countiy* It had no 
o^ to aMUJne powers unknown to 
ks regul^ functionsy under the spe* 
dooi pin of mdoiinittering justice. It 
WM woQB^etent to this duty; and 
aeitber the au:t nor the attempt was 
H^V^ to produce peace in the 
coatrr. By tha Portland cabinet 
tkie nad been no exercise of judg- 
■at on the gu flt or innocence of the 
hiooets cl* Walesy but the deliverj of 
a <^iiiio& on tbe documents hud be- 
ktt them. If it had been the opinion 
6[ ihe cahuiett from a consideration otf 
the dwMtitioPS that she should be out 
itptm ua trial for high treason, that 
would not have impaired the right 
which she and every other person in 
the Jtalm possessed under the Iaw> of 
hcing dfwnfd innocent till she was de- 
clared gm&tj* Her conduct was not 
bffougjiht before the council to convict 
or acquit her; and it was the ^enti* 
nent of Lord Gienville's cabinet that 
it wxs fcareiga from their duty to ex- 
adae such a power* The minute of 
that cabinet was as follows ; — ** We 
am folly convinced that it cannot be 
your maj e sty ^ s wish that we should lay 
hefine jou a detailed account of the 
prooerjinga which have been institu- 
ted bj the legal advisers of the Prince 
of Wales. And we beg leave, with 
all doe humility, to sute, that the laws 
haie not placed us in a situation to de- 
cide em the guilt or innocence of any 
soiiject of the realm, much less on a 
person so nearly conducted with the 
nyil lamilr." Ministers adhered to 
the pnnciple laid down in that minute 
—it was not their duty to try in any 
p£dalsenae her Royal Highness. But, 
Utiar at aJl the circumstances before 
then. It vras for them to sav whether 
Me procee«}iDg should not oe institu- 
ted s^atnst her $ and, in the words of 
die anouCe^ ** it was npt deemed ex- 
ff^eot that any further proceeding 
*MI take pbcc.^ It had been ob- 

served, that diis transaction must comt 
to a decisive point one way or other-* 
and what was this decisive point ? Why, 
to hasten that crisis, a prosecution of 
two newspaper pronrietors was the 
only measure which the wisdom of the 
mover could devise. What did he mean 
by this ? Did he think it necessary to 
institute this trial for the purpose of 
proving the innocence of the Princess of 
Wales f— The inexpediencyof any fur- 
ther proceedings was deaded by the 
cabinets of the Duke of Portland and 
Lord Grenville ; and all the depositions 
were delivered to her Royal Ilighnesf, 
who made such observations on them 
as she thought fit. She had affidavits 
swomin contradiction of them; andstill 
the subsequent opinion of those cabinets 
was, that no further proceedings should 
take place. The mover on the present 
occasion had not distinctly pointed out 
what course was to be pursued. He 
seemed desirous that a fresh examina^ 
tion should be instituted ; but no per- 
son could be considered as a wise and 
prudent protector of the honour of the 
rrincess of Wales, who would call on 
parliament to pursue such a course, 
even if the legislature were competent 
to do it, which, however, it was not. 
If the Princess were placed on her tri* 
al, then, of course, she would have the 

Protection of the law for her defence, 
^ut parliament ought to take oare of 
those defences which were not accord- 
ing to the law or constitution of the 
country, but arose from that sort of 
clamour which was the worst descrip- 
tion of defence to which any person 
could resort. There was no disposi- 
tion, in anyquarter, to deprive the 
Princess of Wales of all proper pro- 
tection ; on the contrary, there was 
every desire to afford her the utmost 
protection of the law. The mover, in 
this instance, had not been able to sUte 
any measure more ^>ecific than the pro* 
secution of two prmters. Now, when 
he consented to this sacrifice of the li- 

Digitized by 




bcrty of the press, it was to be hoped 
that he would have acted on a broad 
and liberal plan ; and, instead of ma- 
king the invidious selection which he 
had done, that he would have moved 
for the prosecution of all persons who 
had published such documents*— ^The 
motion, in short, related to a transac- 
tion in which parliament could not in- 
terfere with advantage to the cause of 
justice, to the parties concerned, and, 
above aU, to the safety and tranquillity 
of the country. Parliament would take 
no Rtep inconswttnt with the welfare 
and pea€o of the country, and with its 
own honour and dignity. — ^The motion 
of Mr Wbi thread was negatived by k 
great majority. 

In the course of the discussions in 
the House of Commons on this p^in- 
liil subject, Mr WbitWead had refer- 
red to an unautheoticatcd document 
which bad been put Into bis hands, re- 
lating to the tofiiimony of some of the 
witnesses examined before the commis- 
sioners of 1806, and had deduced from 
it some inferences, which were under- 
stood as reflections on the commission- 
ers. The noble lords who formed the 
commission, took an early opportunity 
(22d March) of repelling these in&i- 
Buations, and of vindicating the whole 
proceedings, which had been so much 
■lisrepresented. Lord Ellenborough, 
with reference to this subject, obser- 
ved, ** Your lordships need scarcely be 
reminded, that a few years since his 
majesty was pleased to issue a commis- 
sion respecting a subject which it is un- 
necessary for me to name ; in that com- 
mission I found my name included ; but 
the subject of enquiry, the intention to 
issue the commission, and the commis- 
sion itself, were all profound secrets to 
me, until I was called upon to dis- 
charge the high and sacred duty that 
upon me was thus imposed. I felt that 
much was due to this command ; and 
it was accompanied with some inward 
satisfaction, tnat the Integrity and zeal 

with which I had endeavoured to dis- « 
charge my public functions had made , 
a favourable impression on the mind of j 
my sovereign ; notwithstanding whichy g 
the mode in which this command was , 
obeyed has been made the subject of , 
the most unprincipled slanders. It has , 
beei^ said, that after the testimony had ; 
been taken in a case where the most . 
important interests were involved, the . 
persons intrusted had thought fit to 
fabricate an unauthorised document, 
purporting to relate what was not gi- 
yen, and to suppress what waa given 
in evidence. My lords, 1 assert that 
the accusation is false in every part 1 
Whit is there in the general complex- 
ion of my conduct since the commence- 
-mcnt of my public career, that should 
induce any man to venture on an asser^ 
tion so audacious > That it is destitute 
of all foundation, ^^uld, I trust, be 
believed even without my contradict 
tion ; but where it originated, or ho^ 
it was circulated, I know not.** 

Lord Erskine said, " For my own 
part, my lords, I feel the utmost con- 
fidence that my character as a man of 
honour and humanity, and my profes« 
sional eicperience, would be sufficient 
in themselves to repel such an unsup- 
ported accusation ; and what princi- 
pally wounds me, therefore, is, that it 
should have proceeded from a quarter 
in which I thought myself sure of the 
utmost partiality and favour. Bat» 
puttine aside all favour or partiality, I 
trusted that I should at least have 
found credit for common honesty and 
ordinary correctness in the examina^ 
tion of a witness, until a departure from 
them had been supported by some kind 
of proof." 

Lord Grenville. — ** My lords, after 
what has been stated by my noble 
friends, I feel it utterly impossible to 
remain silent ; but I must fairly con- 
fess that it is not without reluctance 
that I address you ; it is not so much 
in conformity with my own feelings as 

Digitized by 



IflSTOllY OF EUk<»E. 


fSkat 1 hste pveviiiled upon nrfHUp 
evoi in die cruel ritiiati«n in whidi I 
ma p]jKxd» in coDJttncticm with my no- 
Ue firiendsy to utter a mtgle word re* 
■lotdy connected widi a nubjeet which 
1 fervently piUy ma^^ never become a 
mattter of discussion in this House. If 
any nm can be so base as to harbour 
a tfaooght to the prejudice of the pro- 
cee^ngs of the commistionerS) after 
what has just been uttered, I am will- 
mg to bear my full share of censure. I 
wSl not, because I camMlty conscienti- 
oankr enter into explanations that de- 
aigmng people may be anxious to draw 
fttxame. Whatever cahunniet may b^ 
drci^tcd, however weighty may be 
theimpuutiens, I wffl fearlessly do my 
duty to the country, to psrfiament, and 
to the sofere^n, and maintain an eter^ 
nal ^ence upon the gen^^ topics of 
this question, .firmly convinced that 
nothmg more injurious to the nation 
could he attempted, than *wou}d be ef- 
fected by lending the countenanceumd 
authority of this House to the wioked 
prevalence of discussions, wluch can 
Ind only to public confusion and an- 
wchy !'» 

Earl Spencer.— « My brds, after 
what has been said by my three no- 
Ue firiends, it might perhaps be con- 
adered umoecessary n>r me to add 
any thing to what has been by them 
so ably and clearly stated $ und al- 
dieugh I rise most reluctantly upon 
ao^ m subject, still, considering the 
«haive which has been made against 
me, m common with my three noble 
Iriniday I feel that I owe it to myself 
■ot to remain nlent. I could have 
wiriied that such a duty had not de- 
volved upon me, fearing, that I may 
trench upon that fine of conduct 
beyond which I am determined not 
to pass, and within which my noble 
friends, fitmi bein^ more practised in 
the habit of pubuc speaking, have 
easily kept. I confess fldso, at 

the SMBe thne, th|t I feel humiliated 
«t being called upon to answer such t 
charge, or its being supposed for an 
instant, that I could be guBty of the 
baseness imputed to me. My noble 
colleagues and myself are char|red widi 
nothing less than a foul conspiracy, of 
vrhich, if we were guilty, not only wfe 
could not appear amongst your lonl- 
ships^ but we unworthy to 
assodate with any honourable or r^ 
'spectable man in the country. My 
lords, under these drcumstances I fed 
myself nK>st rductantly called upon to 
tay a few words, particuUtrly as, m the 
ahuation which I held at the period 
alluded to, I may be said to be moi^ 
particularly responsible for the cor- 
rectness ot the decuments. My lordt, 
to go over again the points so ably 
tirged by my noble friends, would be 
en idle and unnecessary wa$te of your 
-lordships' time; I shomdonly weaJben, 
instead of strengthehinc;^, what they 
liave advanced. I shaD, therefore, con- 
fine myself to saying a word upon the 
point mimediately m question, and t 
do here most solenmly dedare upon 
the honour of a peer and the faith of % 
gentleman, that every word of what 
my noble friends have stated^ is cor- 
rectly and exactly true.** 

Such were the distinct and positive 
dedarations of the eminent persons to 
whom the enquiry of 1806 had been 
confided, and such the awkward cir- 
cumstances to which Mr Whitbread 
was reduced by his zeal and credulit^r* 
The paper on which he founded ma 
accusations was afterwards confinsed 
by himself to be a fabrication. 

Mr Whitbread, however, made an- 
other attempt to revive these painftil 
discussions. Lord Moira, who was 
about departing to take upon him th)e 
government of India, to which he had 
recently been appointed, addressed a 
letter to the grand lodm of free-ma- 
sons, containing some allusions to the 
conduct of hit lordship in the course 

Digitized by 


n EDINBURGH ANmJAL EB0I8TSR» l6il \pisua. 4^ 

of the investigiilDiM into ibe bdumottr 
of the Princess. In that letter there 
vras the following passage >— ^* Wh*« 
the Prince did me the honoar of rela- 
ting to me the repmentation of Lord 
£ardley% expressing giieat uneasiness 
that the asserted notoriety of the in- 
terviews at Belvidere» and the com- 
.ments of the neighbours^ should force 
iiim to take an^jr public steps, I sug- 
gested the possibility that there might 
be some misapprehension of the cir* 
cumstances ; and I entreated, that be- 
fore any other procedure should be 
determined upon^ I might send for the 
steward (Kenny,) and the porter (Jo- 
nathan Partridge,) to examine them. 
^This was permitted. I sent for the 
servants and questioned them* My 
report to the Prince was, that the mat- 
ter had occasioned very little observa* 
tion in the house, none at all in the 
neiffhbourfaoed, and that it was eo- 
tirdy unnecessary for his Royal High- 
ness to notice it in any shape* The 
servants had be^n desired by me never 
to talk upon the subject ; Lord Eard- 
}kj was informed, that his conception 
ol what had been stated by the ser- 
vants was found to be inaccurate ; no 
.mention was ever made to any one, 
not even to the lords who conducted 
the enquiry three years afterwards, of 
the particulars related by the servants ; 
and the circumstance never would have 
been known at all, had not ^ kffal 
advisers of the Princess, for the wkit 
of putting a false cok>ur on that mves- 
tigation, indiscreetly brought it for- 
veard. The death of Kenny in the 
interval tempted them to risk this pro- 
cedure. Jonathan Partri^^ having 
been known, at the time wmu he was 
questioned, to be devoted to the Prin- 
, cess, from his own declaration to the 
steward, no one can doubt but that 
her Rojal Highness would the next 
day be informed by him of his having 
been examined. The measure was 
most offensive, if not justified by some 

uncommon pecuUaift^of oircumstanc«» 
Yet absolute silence is preserved upon 
it for so k>^ a period by her Royal 
HighneM^s advisers \ a forbearance 
only to be solved by their bemg too 
cautious to touch upon the point while 
KerniT viras alive."— Mr Whitbrea* 
remarked in the House of Commoai, 
<< that when he first read the par»- 
graplu he could not avoid putting the 
same construction upon it, which, he 
found by the public papers, it had re* 
ceived out of doors. He did conceive 
it to mean that there was something 
in the evidence of Kenny, which ma£ 
the advisers of the Princess afraid to 
advert to it during his life^time; and 
with this impression on his mind, |)e 
had intended to have brought the mat- 
ter before the House earlier, in order 
that ; an it^pression should not go' 
ri>road injurious to the Princess, after 
the Bail of Moira should have left the 
country,, and ezplanatipa was impossi* 
ble. ' Upon reMling the p^ra^aph^ 
however, over and over jagaio* to try 
whether he could find put a^othor 
meanin^^ it did occur to him, that per- 
haps his lordship onlv meant, tliat 
Kennj, if aKve, could have contra- 
dicted any pmon who said that hm 
lordship jexamined the witnesses in any 
manner that was inaproper or ui^eco- 
minff his dignity. Thinkin|^ that thia 
might possmy be the me^mng of the 
none lord, he did not conceive it ne* 
cessanr to bring the business before 
the liouse ; but, finding by some ob- 
servations in one of the public papers^ 
tluit the subject v?as viewed in another 
Hght out of doors, and that the pub- 
lic understood that part of the noble 
Icnd's letter according to its plain and 
obvious construction, he thought it 
now of the greatest importance, that 
Lord Moira diould have an opportu- 
nity of exidaining his meaning before 
he left the country* As any assertion 
which came from a man so h^h in 
rank, and so high in character as Lord 

Digitized by 


Chap. 4.] 



Umra^ must carry with h great 
imghty he thought that an impret- 
dtm ought not to be suffered to re- 
■un on the public mind, that either 
the Prbceas or her advisers were eter 
diraid that her hoooor would have been 
in danger from anf evidence Kenny 
lD%bt have given. There was an- 
ether paragraph, which Lord Moira, 
and none but he, could explain* When 
it was suted in the letter, that Par- 
age, Lord Eardley's porter, was 
known to be entirely devoted to the 
Princess, he thought it oufl;ht to be 
exp)»ned, what was meant bv the de- 
▼otioo of one of Lord Eardlcy's me- 
sial servants to the Princess of Wales i 
How, or &om what reason, it could be 
supposed that a person in that station 
ofufe would conununicate to the Prtn* 
^oett any examination which he mieht 
barve pndergone, was a matter capable 
of esnlanation only by the noble eari, 
and S not ezphdned by him, how it 
was possible tor any other person to 
explain it he knew not. Fmdmg that 
this part of the noble earl's letter, as 
weD as that to which he had first di« 
Kcted.tbe attention of the House, had 
been cGinm^tcd upon in a public 
print, and surprise expressed equal to 
that which he himself fek, he could 
not be content to suftr the matter to 
]iass without making some observa* 
tions, or without pointmg out the ex- 
pediency, as well an the absolute ne* 
cessity, of retiring a full and sadsfac- 

a explanation mm the noble earl, 
e he quitted Great Britain* 
When the exalted rank of the Earl of 
Moira was considered, and when it 
was known that every thing which 
came from him would be received by 
the country with that degree of weight 
to which nis lor^hip's opinions and 
remarks were entitled, he apprehended 
tkat a feeling of Justice, as well to- 
wards the Earl of Moira himself, as 
towards the Princess of Wales, called 

for an explicit declaration of the real 
meaning of th^ words in die noble 
Iqrd's letter* He was sure the House 
would feel a pleasure in putting the 
noble lord in a situation most conge- 
nial to his own heart, that of explam- 
ing uneouivocally and cleariy, a mat- 
ter which was at present involved in 
doubt, and which might lead to con- 
dusions and inferences which the no- 
ble earl would himself be the first to 
lament.'— He had hoped from time to 
time, that this most heart- rending sub* 
ject would have been set at rest* New 
matter, however, seemed daily to be 
brought before the pubUc^ and he now 
almost despaired that the subject would 
ever be brought to a satisfactory con- 
clusion, unless some decided act of re- 
co^tion was either advised by Idi 
maiesty's ministers to be adopted, or 
that the House would place tneu- seal 
upon the matter, and ck>se it for ever. 
How this was to be done^ could best 
be pointed out at the proper season. 
He most sincerely wisned, however* 
that the question might be concluded 
by any otner means than through the 
nuedium of that House, and anxiously 
hoped, that without considerable de* 
lay. Ids Royal Highness the Prince 
Regent's nunisters would advise him 
to give to her Royal Highness an es- 
tabushment out of his civil list, ade^ 
quate to the elevated situation which 
sue held in this country* Some mode 
or other, he was satisfied, must ere 
long be had recourse to for the pur- 
pose of dissipating all conflicting opi- 
nions, and he trusted it would be such 
as to place her Royal Highness in a 
sphere adequate to her merits* For 
the present he should content himself 
by moving, < That a message be sent 
to the Lords, requesting their lord- 
ships to grant permisdon to the Earl 
of Moira to attend at the bar of this 
House, for the purpose of being exa- 
mined as to his knowledge of certain 


Digitized by 



ctrcuiQStaacee connected with the con- 
duct of her Royal Highness the Prin- 
cess of Wales.'*' 

The Speaker haying observed that 
this motion was unprecedented^ Lord 
Csistlereagh said» ** he thought the 
House must feel, that, according to 
the custom of parliament, the present 
motion could not be received, and 
that it would be very improper to 
t^e the step proposed by the hon. 
gentleman. He should, however, npt 
confine himself merely to the forms of 
the House, but would say upon the 
substance of it, that he was surprised 
that the hon. gentkman should (after 
six times that the subject had been 
brought forward in different shapes^ 
and Uie feeling of the House was well 
^nown upon it,^ think it necessary 
again to revive tne controversy. He 
could conceive no other purpose which 
this could answer but to agitate the 
public mind, and wound the delicacy 
of the House. This was merely a 
collateral point of a subject into which 
the hon. gentleman well knew that 
the House did not wish to enter. He 
was also surprised, that at the close of 
bis speech, instead of calling upon 
them to pronounce upon the question 
of guilt or innocence, he should mere* 
ly have suggested an increase of the 
establishment of her Royal Highness. 
If no question of form had rendered 
the motion inadmissible, he should 
have opposed it in its substance, as he 
was convinced that no possible good 
could result from the interference of 
parliament ; and he thought that on 
the contrary, it might in every quar« 
ter prove injurious. In his opinion 
the non. gentleman, by his motion^ 
had departed from, those principles 
upon which parliament was bouna to 
act, and he was satisfied that the 
whole of his conduct was likely to dp 
no public good, but, on the contrary, 
V> do great public mischief."— Mr 
Canning said, << that having been in the 

House hut a few minutes, he bdieved 
at first that this was only one of those 
irregular conversations which had too 
frequently of late been introduced, and 
was not at the beginning aware that 
there was a motion rejgvuarly submit- 
ted to the House. It that had been 
the case, he should not have said a sin- 
gle word upon the subject ; but now, 
reeling it to be a question of some im- 
portance, he was anxious to state the 
grounds on which he should vote for 
passing to the order of the day. An 
hon. baronet (Sir Francis Burdett) 
had referred to that understanding, bv* 
which the House had shewn its wish, 
that there should be no further dis- 
cussions upon this unhappy subject. 
He believed, that the last debate on 
the subject ended with the under- 
standms;, that no possible good could 
result m)m the discussion. He be- 
lieved, that the House, and every- 
meinber of it, had felt the most anxi- 
ous wish that they should not be call- 
ed upon for any determination on the 
subject, unless it should come to such 
an extremity that pariiament was ob- 
liged to take some step. As he did 
not think that such an extremity had 
now arrived, he could not coincide in 
the expediency of these renewed dis- 
cussions* He did not imagine that 
the present proceeding was at all ne- 
cessary ; and although he admitted 
it was possible that a case might arise^ 
in which the House and the country' 
would find it necessary to come to 
some substantial conclusion upon thia 
subject, yet he trusted his majesty's 
ministers would avoid beiog driven to 
such an extremity. He admitted, 
that where the possibility existed of 
having occasion to recur to such a 
measure, it was proper to be prepared 
for the worst; out if he was called 
upon to state whether such a necessity 
existed now, he would have no hesita- 
tion in answering in the negative. 
There was another impression, as he 

Digitized by 





Mieredy opon the miod of the Hotue 
» to thu subject. They thought that 
the abstainiag from discussions upon 
itf was the most likdy way to bring 
about that happy termination of it, to 
which every one anxiously looked. 
While they abstained from discussion, 
they conceived that there was one 
chamce left for that species of termina- 
tion which aU good men and all good 
subjects wished to see.<— He believed 
that those men betrayed a very imper- 
fect knowledge of human nature and 
hom»i feelingSy who could suppose 
that the continuance or rjivival of such 
diicusnons was the most likely means 
of prociuin^ that termination which 
was so much desired. He concei?ed 
that if those discussions were revivedf 
the whole period between the first dis- 
cttsuon and' the last might be consi- 
dered as so much time lost in the ac- 
complishment of the object in ques- 
tion* It was £rom these feelings that 
hcf sn4f as he believed* many other 
members^ deprecated these discus- 

Thus terminated those unhappy con- 
troversiesy which had so long gratified 
the malice of faction, fed tne vulgar 
ippetite for slander, and disturbed the 
repose of the country. On. an affair 
of this kind we have been anxious to 
abstain from minute detail, and have 
preierred laying before our readers a 
compendious, but impartial account of 
the proceedings in parliament, to any 
other form in which the subject could 

have been explained. There can be 
no necessity for reverting to the pro- 
ceedmgs or 1806, or for staining our 
pages with the depositions of the wit- 
nesses examined before the commis- 
sioners, or the reflections to which 
such evidence may have eiven rise. It 
has been confessed on aU hands, that 
the Princess stands acquitted of cri- 
minality ; but against the charge of le- 
vity, it may seem more difficult wholly 
to defend her. Such, however, was not 
the question ajritated, in consequence 
of her letter of January, 1813. From 
that letter it appears her advisers in- 
tended, that she should be enabled 
to interfere with the unquestionable 
powers of the Prince Regent, as the 
natural guardian of his daughter, and 
the actual chief magistrate of these 
realms. This attempt, as misht have 
i>een expected, proved altogether abor- 
tive ; and the merit, or demerit, as 
well as the influence and authority of 
her Royal Highness, remained, uter 
all the tedious and vain discussions- 
all the ebullitions of party zeal^ and 
all the offensive disclosures which were 
unfortunately made, precisely as they 
had been placed before by two succes- 
sive cabinets—that of Lord Gren- 
^nlle in 1806, and that of the Duke of 
Portland in 1807. With the unfortu- 
nate differences which had occasioned 
so many painful scenes, neither the le- 
gislature nor the country, it would 
seem, can ever prudently interfere. 

Digitized by 




Afiin of IrdaiuL^Disctusion of ilie CathoUc 
ConAtct of the Irish Catl 

in Parlmmeni^^ 

ima year teemed to open better pros* 
pects to the cathoUcs of Irekdd than 
any which preceded it. The mini- 
sters were divided in opinion as to 
the merits of the cathoUc question ; 
thev had ceased to interest themselves 
with zeal in the result ; and the incli- 
nations of the Prince Regent were un- 
derstood to be favourable to the claims 
of the petitioners. The protestants, 
however, were seized with alarm ; pe- 
titions against the claims of the Roman 
catholics were poured in from all quar- 
terSy and a respectable association was 
formed, with the avowed intention of 
•ppoung further concessions. But the 
friends of the catholics were determi- 
ned to persevere ; and on the 25th of 
February, Mr Grattan moved that the 
House should resolve itself into a com- 
mittee, to prepare a bill for the relief 
of the Irish catholics. The arguments 
in support of the motion were powers 
fully and ably stated, upon this occa- 
sion, by many distinguished speakers. 
The motion, it was said, proposed 
to remove the civil disabiliues which 
affect a great portion of our fellow 
subjects, on account of their religion ; 
offering, at the same time, to accom- 
pany the measure with every security 
which may be required, for tne protec- 

tion of the protestant interest. Moch 
has been said of the question of right* 
This appears, however, to be a very 
unnecessary metaphysical discussion, 
and one which cannot have any prac- 
tical application in the present instances 
In the same sense in which religious 
toleration is a right, a due %hm of 
political power is a right ; both mutt 
yield to the paramount interests of 
society, if such interests require it ; 
neither can be justifiably withheld, un- 
less their inconsistency with the public 
interest is clearly established. Bat in 
the present case, the question does not, 
in any respect, arise ; for we have al- 
ready admitted the Roman catholics 
to substantial power, and what we 
seek to exclude them from is honour. 
The privileges which are withheld are 
impotent, as protections to the state, 
but most galling and orovoking to the 
party which is excluded. No candid 
mind can hesitate to admit, that the 
exclusions must be sevtrely felt, as a 
grievance of the most insulting kind. 
That the man of the first enunence at 
the bar should be prevented from act- 
ing as one of his majesty's counsd, 
or from sitting on the bencn of Justice ; 
that the gallant officer, who has dis- 
tinguished himself in the battles of his 

Digitized by 


Chaf. 5.] 



countiy, wheo hit heart is beating 
h^ with the love of honourable hme, 
diould be stopped in his career^ and 
tee his companions in arms raised above 
bios, to lead his countrymen to victory 
and glory» must be felt as deeply hu^ 
miliaang I Does it require argument 
to ihew» that exclusion from parlia* 
ment must be considered as a privation 
and indignity ? Why are men so desi- 
TDui of this distinction ? From the ho- 
ses! ambition of serving their coun- 
tiy, from the pride of abiding by 
mourable engagements^ or from 
motives, perhaps, of a less elevated 
description i Whatever they may be^ 
itooonrable and dignified, or otherwise^ 
tJiey subsist in the minds of the catho* 
Iks as much as in those of other men ; 
odf though the elective franchise, 
which has been granted to the Irish 
catholic, gives him a substantial repre- 
sentation, yet the exclusion from par- 
liament is caknlated to operate as a 
teverc and humfliating disability ; and 
the more homiliating, because it is a 
nark of inferiority put on the ca- 
diolic, merelj for the purpose ^f 
marking that inferiority. The topic, 
that toleration is one things and po- 
litical power another, has fittle appli- 
cstioa to this case, even if it were 
JMt ; &r in this instance it seems to be 
contended that rank, and station, and 
honoor, are not the proper appendages 
of wealthy and knowledge, and educa- 
tion, and of every thing which const!- 
totea political and moral strength* 
la every system of human policy, the 
lew must govern the many, but put- 
tJB^ military force out of the case, 
kgitiraate government must arise from 
their saperionty in wealth and know- 
ledge ; if, therefore, you exclude the 
weStky and the educated from the 
l^ovemiBent of the state, you throw 
aito the scale of the many, the only 
woght which could have preserved the 
balnice of the sute itself. This is 
aoiversally true ; but when you reject 

▼OL. Tl. PAJtT U 

the opulent and the educated, on ac- 
count of a condition which they have 
in common with the many, you add 
the attraction of politics and party to 
the operations oi general and naoral 
causes ; and, if the principle of ex- 
clusion be a religious one, you organ- 
ize, not merely ue principles of revo- 
lution, but ot revolution furious and 
interminable. But by the policy of 
separating political rankfrom property 
and education in any intermediate de- 
gree, the conclusion is equally true, 
Uiat the attempt so to separate esta- 
blishes a principle, not of government, 
but of the dissolution of ffovemment. 
So sensible of this truth were our 
ancestors, that, when they saw, or 
thought they saw, a necessity for dis- 
honouring the Roman catholicf they 
adopted, as a necessary consequence, 
the policy of impoverishing and bar- 
barizing him : When they degraded 
him, they felt that their only safety 
was to keep him in poverty and igno- 
rance ; their policy, good or bad, was 
consistent — tne means had a diabolical 
fitness for their end. Is it not a per- 
fect corollary to this proposition, is it 
not the legitimate converse of this 
truth, that if vou re-admit them to 
wealth and to Knowledge, you must 
restore them to ambition and to ho- 
nour ? What have we done ? We have 
trod back our steps ; we have rescued 
the catholics from the code, which 
formed at once their servitude and our 
safety, and we fancy we can continue 
the exclusion, from civil station, which 
superinduced that code. Their's was 
a necessity, real or fancied, but a con- 
sistent system ; we pretend no neces- 
sity ; we have voluntarily abdicated 
the means of safety, and we wilfully 
and uselessly continue the causes of 
danger. The time to have paused 
was before we heaved, from those 
sons of earth, the mountains, which 
the wisdom or the terrors of our an- 
cestors had heaped upon them f but 
G t 

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we hate ntised them np and placed 
them erect— are we prepared to huii 
them down and bury them again ? 
Where it the madman to propose it ? 
Where is he who imaj^nes that they 
can remain as they are ? The state c* 
the catholics o* Ireland is, in this re- 
spect, ynparalleled by any thing in 
ancient or modem history. They are 
not slates, as some df their absurd ad- 
vocates call them, but freemen, pos- 
sessing substantially the same political 
rights with their protestant brethren, 
and with all the other subjects of the 
empire, that is, petoessed of ^ the 
adyantages which can be derived from 
the best laws, administered in the best 
manner, of the most free and most 
highly civilized country in the world. 
Do you beliere that such a body, 
possessed of such a station, can sub- 
mit to conttimely and'exdusion ? that 
they will stand behind youi* chair and 
wait upon you at the public banquet ? 
The less valuable, in sordid computa- 
tion, the privilege, the more marked 
the insult m refusing it, and the more 
honourable the anxiety for possessing 
it ! Miserable and unworthy wretches 
roust they be if they ceased to aspire 
to it ; base and dangerous hypocrites 
if they dissembled their wishes ; for 
midable instruments of domestic or 
foreign tyranny if they did n6t enter- 
tain them ! The liberties of England 
would not, for half a century, remain 
proof against the contact and conu- 
gion of four millions of opulent and 
powerful subjects who disregarded the 
honours of the state, and fcjit utterly 
uninterested in the constitution. — In 
coming forward^ therefore, with this 
claim of honourable ambitioiii they at 
once afford the* best pledge of their 
sincerity, and the most satisfactory 
cvidencfc of their tide. They claim 
the benefit of the ancient vital prin- 
ciple of the constitution, namely, that 
the honours of the ktate should be 
p^en to ttie ulrnts and to the virtue 

of all its members.-^The adversarief 
of the measure invert the order of all 
civilised sodety. They have made 
the catholics an aristocracy, and they 
would treat them as a mob; their 
flfive, to the lowest of the rabble, ti 
he is a prptestaht, what they re^se 
to the head of the peerage, if he is a 
catholic. They shut out my Lord 
Finaal from the state, and they make 
his footmfui a member of it ; and thi^ 
strange confusion of all social order» 
they dignify with the name of the 
British constitution ; and the propo- 
sal to consider th^ best an<i most con- 
ciliatory mode of correcting it, they 
cry down as a dangerous ancTpresump*- 
tuous innovation.—The catholics pro- 
pose no innovation. - They ask for an 
equal share, as fellow subjects, in the 
cbnstitutibn, as they find it ; in that 
constitution, in whose original stamina 
they had an undfspiited right, before 
there was a reformation, and before 
there was a revolution,* and before the 
exist eiice of the abuses, which induced 
the Necessity of either. Thej desire 
to beai^ its' burdens, to shar^ its dair- 
gers, to participate its glory, and tc 
abide its fate ; they bring an ofFerhi^, 
their hearts and hatodd, their lives anc 
fortunes, but they desire also the pri 
vilege of bringing with them theii 
consciences, their religion, and theii 
lionour, without which they wou]< 
be worthless and dangerous associates 
—-The position, therefore, to be main 
tained by those who say that the firs 
principles of the constitution are ii 
opposition to the claim, is rather : 
critical 6ne. They must shew w^h' 
it is that a Roman catholic may Vot 
for a member to sit in parliament 
and yet may not himself be a meml>e 
of it ; why he may be the most po^ 
rrfiil and wealthy subject in the realm 
and the greatest landed proprietor, an 
yet may not fill the lowest office in th 
meanest town' upon his estates ; wrh 
he may be the first advocate at tL 

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Cbaf. 5.J 



liTi and be incapable of acting as one 
rfthe counsel ol his soTereIgn ; why 
k naj be elector, militaiy officer^ 
pud juroTy corporator* nMgi«trate» 
• Ireland, where the danger, if an j, 
ii wtiWf^Mi^, and why nope of them iq 
England where the causes of appre- 
beanoa are cdnparatiTelv trifling and 
inagnificant. Belide^ all this, argu* 
i^ at they do. that the catholic reli* 
fioB necessarily induces hostilit)r to 
ne state, on the very points which, 
ii the o^hs taken hy the catholics, 
art solennlj disaTowed, they must 
4ew the safety of barhouring in the 
boBQia of tbe state, and admitting tp 
iu ctseiicial and substantial benefits, a 
body ai men whose only title to ad* 
ansioa has been peijory ; that is^ a 
boiSy of inen, who, in addition to reli- 
pam opinions inconsistent with our 
particolar constitotipns, have violated 
the soVemn dbHsrations which bind 
man to man, aiid therefore are un- 
woftfty of being admitted into any 
tocsely, in winch the sacred principles 
sf Bocml intercourse are respected. If 
tbese things are so, the petition^ of 
ibe pnbBc sbonlii be, not to be pro- 
tect^ against the dangers which are 
to eome, but to be rescued from those 
vbidi fare already been incurred^ 
saj iaore« if oaths are not regarded, 
«e abosld not rdy on the vain secori- 
txs wbach onr ancestors h^ve resorted 
% iad which consist of oaths, and 
<dj^ oaths ; bat we should desire some 
vr OKans of proTine their religion, 
^ the testimony of others^ and chain* 
^ them down to it, without the pos* 
4ficy of disowning or escaping mm 
s* Bfltlet OS examine, somewhat more 
xcaratelyy these snpposed principles 
of fiabfic policy, which oppose an in- 
npeiAle bar tb'fhe adndstion of the 
Rooai catholics. They join issue on 
^ polEit ; 90 for as concession is in- 
soasMtent with the trqe principles of 
^ cosstitution, the safety of the es* 
i«Uiihed chorchy and of the pfbtsstant 

throne, they admit that they are en« 
titled to nothing ; so far as it is not 
incpnsistent, they claim to be entitled 
to every thing. Let it be shewn that 
these great foundations of our liberties ' 
aa4 of our civil and ecclesiastical poli« 
cy are their enemies, and they must 
yield in silence. They must receive it 
as the doom of fate ; it must be sub* 
mitted to as part of the mysterious 
system of Providence, which, vhibt 
it has en^barked us in an awful Strug* 
ffle, for the preservation of its choiaest 
blessinfi^s, has ordained that, in this 
struggle, we may not unite the hearts 
and affections of our people. We 
must cherish the hope that the same 
incomprehensible wisdom which at 
once impels us to this miehty contest^ 
and forbids us to use we means of 
success, may work out our safety by 
methods of its own.— If it can be 
made appear that the imperious inte- 
rests of^our country pronftHince, from 
necessity, this heavy and immitigable 
sentence upon millions of its subiects, 
they will learn submission, and not 
embitter their hopeless exclusion, by 
the miseries of discontent and of dis- 
order ; but, before they bow down to 
this eternal interdict, before they re- 
tire from the threshold of the consti* 
tutipn, to the gloom of hopeless and 
never-ending exclusion, are they not 
entitled to have it proved by argu- 
ments plear as the light of heaven, 
that this necessity exists ? Let it be 
stated in some dear intelligible form, 
what i9 thif fundamental prop of the 
constitution, what is this overwhelm- 
ing ruin, which is to tumble upon us 
by its removal. Let us meet and close 
upon this argument ; but beware of 
the attempt to outlaw the Irish peo- 
ple by an artificial and interested cla- 
mour. Let not those^ who have en- 
couraged the Irish people to expect 
redress, now affect to be bound by 
this spell of their own raising. This 
would be to palter with their owr^ 

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coiiBciencet and the oublic safety, and 
enUily as the ineyiuble consequences) 
calamity and disgrace^ — ^The only ob- 
stacles which appear to stand in the 
way of the Roman catholics, said their 
advocates, are the oath of supremacy, 
and the declaration against transub- 
atantiation. The former of these, in 
its original enactment and application, 
bad a very limited political relation. — 
The apphcation of the oath, as it was 
modified by Elizabeth, had chiefly 
(and with the exception of offices im- 
mediately derived from the crown, or 
concerning the administration of Jus- 
tice) a reugious, and not a political, 
appucation ; subject to these excep- 
tions, it professed not to controul pri> 
vate opinion, nor to make it a ground 
of exclusion ; but it subjected the 
public profession of non- conformity to 
penalty ; and, accordingly, Roman 
catholics were admissable to parlia- 
ment and to corporate offices, for 
more than one hundred years after 
the introduction of the oath of supre- 
macy. Then came the laws of Charles 
II., which, for the first time, superin- 
duced general exclusion from omce, as 
a political consequence of religious 
opmion. — ^Hcre, then, were two prin- 
ciples, the first, that of the Reforma- 
tion, which proscribed the catholic re- 
ligion ; the second, that of Charles IL, 
which presumed that certain unconsti- 
tutional tenets must be held by those 
who professed that religion, and there- 
fore made civil incapacity the conse- 
quence of the religious belief. Here 
were two principles perfectly distinct, 
bat perfectly consistent— now what 
have we done i We have, in fact, abro- 
gated the principles of the reformation, 
lor we have repealed the laws against 
recusancy, and legalized the religion ; 
having done this it was a necessary 
consequence to say that we $;ould not 
infer, from a reli^ous tenet which we 
legalized, a pohtical opinion incon- 
sistent with the safety of the state ^ 

otherwise we should have been unjua* 
tifiable in legalizing it ; we theretbre 
substituted instead of the renunciation 
of the religious doctrine, from which 
the political opinion had been formerly- 
inferred, a direct denial, upon oath, 
of the political opinion itselt. If then 
the Roman catholic may lawfully ex- 
ercise the religion, and if he will take 
the political oath, how can we con- 
sistently make the objection, either in 
a religious or political point of view, 
to his being admitted to the remaining 
privileges of citizenship ? Again, the 
oath of supremacy extends to a re- 
nunciation, as well of the spiritual as 
of the temporal authority of the Pope ; 
and its object appears to have been 
two-fold ; first, to exclude the inter* 
ference of the Pope in the temporal 
concerns of the realm ; and, secondly, 
to secure the protestant hierarchy a- 

ginst the claims of the sect which nad 
en put down ; As to the first, the 
Roman catholic tenders an oath, ut« 
terly denying the Pope^s ricrht to ex- 
ercise any kmd of temporal jurisdUc- 
tion in these kingdoms ; as to the se- 
cond, he tenders an oath, abjuring all 
interference with the protestant esta- 
blishment and hierarchy. What then 
remains in difference ? The rifirht of 
the Pope with respect to their clergy ? 
Now to this the oath of supremacy 
never had any reference, nor could 
have had ; Their clergy were not re* 
cognised as having any legal existence 
when the oath of supremacy was en- 
acted, nor as the sub|ect of any other 
regulation, than that of heavy punish- 
ment if they were discovered ; this 
part of the oath merely looks to the 
protestant hierarchy, and all this is ef- 
fectually provided for by the oatlu-^ 
As to the corporation act, every per- 
son acquainted with its history, knows 
that it was introduced, not with a view 
to the Roman catholics, but to secta- 
ries of a very different description, who 
bad got into the corporations during 

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Chap. 5.] 



tbe gorernment of Cromwell, and were 
supposed to be disaffected to the poli- 
ticf of the court. Part of the oata, as 
it was ori^nally framed, declared that 
It was nmawful, under any pretence, 
to take up arms against the kine, or 
those commissionea by him ; and the 
amendment, which sought to oualifV it 
by adding the word ** lawfully" be- 
fore "commissioned,** was thrown out. 
One of the first acts of William and 
Mary was to repeal this scandalous 
and slavish enactment, which was at 
direct variance with the first princi- 
ples of the Revolution ; and yet we are 
told, io patriotic petitions, from loyal 
protestant bodies, that this corpora- 
tion act was one of the great bul- 
warks of tbe Revolution.— It is re- 
quired, no doubt, by the Bill of 
Rights, that the new oath of supre- 
macy, thereby substituted for the for- 
mer one, should be taken by all who 
were bound to take the former one ; 
but this is not introduced as one of 
the grievances redressed, or rights de- 
dared, but it is merely incidentally 
mentioned, in consequence of the sub- 
stitution of the one oath for the other. 
The declaration against popery is in 
no respect adverted to ; but one fact» 
most decisive and important on this 
pomty is this, that wnen this act was 
passed^ the Roman catholics of Ire- 
umd were not, by any law or usage, 
excluded from parliament, or from 
civil or military offices. — The articles 
of Limerick (3d October, 1691), sti- 
j)alated for all such privileges, in the 
exercise of religion, as were enjoyed in 
the rdgn of Charles II., and as were 
consistent with the laws of Ireland. 
They required the oath of allegiance, 
as created in the first year of William 
and Mary ; and the oath to be admi- 
nistered to the Roman catholics, sub- 
mitting to his majesty's government, 
was to be that oath and no other | and 
it was farther stipulated that, so soon 
M their affairs should pennit them to 

summon a parliament, their majesties 
should endeavour to procure them such 
further securities as might preserve 
them from any disturbance, on account 
of their religion. At this time, Ro- 
man catholics were not excluded from 
parliament in Ireland, nor were thera 
any test or corporation l^ws in forct 
against them. On the faith of these 
articles, all of which were punctually 
performed on their part, they surren- 
dered the town, and left King Wil- 
liam at liberty to abplv his arms tor 
the ^reat cause in whicn he was ftus* 
tainmg the liberties of Europe. The 
stipulation on the part of government 
was to protect them against any addi* 
tional oaths, and to endeavour to pro- 
cure for them additional securities* 
What was done ? The act of the Sd 
of William and Mary was passed, 

fiving them no additional securities^ 
ut' excluding them for the first time 
from parliament, and from offices civil 
and military, and from the bar, unlesd 
they subscribed the declaration against 
popery, and swore the oath of supre- 
macy. — The great men who perfected 
that revolution had deeply studied the 
laws and constitution oi their coun- 
try ; with ardent feelings and sublime 
conceptions, they made no unneces- 
sary breach on any ancient usage ; no 
wanton encroachment on any rights 
of the people or of the king ; not like 
our modem improvers, who hold for 
nothing the wisdom which has gone 
before them, and set up their own 
crude conceptions, with an utter con- 
tempt for all the sacred lore of their 
ancestors. They committed no nnfe 
outrage on those who had gone be- 
fore tnem ^ they entailed no odious 
bondage on those who were to suc- 
ceed them — with the modesty and sim- 
plicity which characterize great minds^ 
they declared the essential rights of 
the constitution. They saw that the 
system of the Reformation would be 
lACompleUi unlets the Sing^ trfio wis 

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the temporal head of the church, 
should he in communion with that 
church ; they therefore enacted that 
he should hold his crown only while 
he adhered to his religion. They de- 
clared the throne unalterably protes- 
tant, — ^they declared the religion of 
the state unalteraf>ly protestant ; and 
having thus laid the firm foundation 
of civil and religious freedom, they 
left all other considerations open to 
the progress of time, and to the wis- 
dom of posterity. 

That time has come, and that pos- 
terity IS now called upon to decide. 
We are fighting the same battle in 
which the ulustrious deliverer of these 
countries was engaged,— we are de- 
fending the liberties of Europe, and of 
the world, against the same unchange- 
able and insatiable ambition which tMa 
hssailed themi— we are engaged with 
an enemy far more formidable thaa 
Louis the f^ourteenth, whether we con- 
sider the vastness of his plans, his ex- 
haustless resources, or his remorseless 
application of them, — ^but if our dan- 
gers are aggravated, our means of safe*- 
ty are increased. William the Third 
was obliged to watch, with a Jealous 
eye, the movements of one half of hia 
subjects, whilst he employed the ener- 
gies of the other. We have it in our 
own power to unite them all, by one 

freat act of national justice. If. we 
o not wantonly and obstinately fling 
away the means which God's provi- 
dence has placed within our grasp, we 
may bring the energies of allour peo- 
ple, with one hand and heart, to strike 
i^ainst the common enemy. 

Reb'gion is degraded when it is 
jbrandished as a political weapon, and 
there is no medium in the use of it : 
either it is justified by holy zeal and 
fervent piety, or the appeal to it be- 
comes liable to the most suspicious 
imputation. The safety of the state is 
.essentially interwoven with the inte- 
grity of the establishment'. The esta- 

blished rdigioQ is the child of free- 
dom. The Reformation grew out of 
the free spirit of bold investigation, | 
in its turn it repaid the obligation 
with more than nlial gratitude, and 
contributed, with all its force, to raise 
the fabric of our liberties. Our civil 
and religious liberties would each of 
them^ lose much of their security, if 
they were not so deeply indented each 
with the other. The church need not 
to be apprehensive. It is a plant of 
the growth of SOO years ; it has struck 
its roots into the centre of the state* 
and nothing short of a political earth* 
quake can overturn it : while the state 
IS safe, it o^ust be so ; but let it not be 
forgotten, that if the state is endan^ 
gered, the church cannot be secure* 
The church is protected by the purity 
of its doctrines and its discipline i the 
leaming and piety of its ministers ^ 
their exempbry discharge of every mo- 
rat and Christian duty ; the dignity of 
its hierarchy, the extent of* its posses- 
sions, and the reverence of the pub- 
lic for its ancient.' and unquestionable 
rights. To these the catholic adds the 
mite of his oath, that he does not har- 
bour the chimerical hope, or the ua- 
constitutional wish, to shake or to dis- 
turb it ; and therefore, all which is 
requisite, for the security of the church* 
is that it should remain, in repose, ou 
its own deep and immoveable founda- 
tions ; and this is the policy which the 
great body of the church of Ireland* 
and of the church of England, hare 
now adopted. If any thing could en- 
danger its safety, it would be the con- 
duct of intemperate and officious men* 
who would erect the church into a po- 
litical arbiter, to prescribe rules of im- 
perial policy to tne throne and to the 

The conduct of the Roman catholic s 
of Ireland has been resorted to, it waB 
remarked, as an argument for abandon- 
ing the pledge of the last session ; and 
there have been some proceedings, en 

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t]iepart of tlie public btodies who affect 
toadfbrtiiem* al^getheruDJuatifiablei 
Tbfnr attempts to £ctate to the entire 
k>dy how toe J are to act on each parti- 
cular political occurreDce,-*their pre- 
ismtiig to hold an inquisit^n on the 
coodnet of individuals in the exercise 
of their dective franchise, and putting 
t^kOB Qoder the ban pf their displea- 
«Be because they vote for their private 
fiieadiy and abide by their plighted en- 
pgeme&u ; all this is a degree of in^ 
qoisitorial authority unexampled and 
ifisu&rable ; and this by persons pro- 
kmag themselves tue advocates of un- 
hoBoSsd freedom and unlimited tolera* 
don, at the moment when they are 
extendmg their tyranny into the do« 
vesdc arrangements of every catholic 
£undy io the country. The tone of 
BoqnaliEed demand, and haughty re- 
Kctioa of aU conditions or accpmnao- 
oattoi^ so confidently announced i3y 
thenit is not less disgostinff ; nor can- 
the inteinperanceof many of their pub- 
lic speeches, the exaggeration and vio- 
lence of some of their printed publica- 
tioas» be palliated. 

. But It ts most unfair to visit on the 
Roaaa catholics, the opinions add the 
condnct of such public assemblies as 
pro&» to act for them ; if they la- 
bour Bnder a real and a continuing 
giiersDce^ and one which justifies, on 
their part» a continued claim, they 
BBst act through the medium of po- 
polar assemblies, i^d must, of course, 
be exposed to all the inconveniences 
vUch attend discussions in such as- 
snablies. tn all such places, we know 
tiot anbomided applause attends the 
saswfao occupies the extreme position 
of <ntnioa, and that the extravagance 
sf has expression of such opinion will 
■ot be calculated to diminish it. That 
these may be many individuals anxious 
io pomote their own consequence, at 
the expence of the party whose inte- 
rests thej profess to advocate, is an 
nil ioseparable from such a state of 

things; and, amongst those who sin- 
cerely wish to promote the interests of 
the cause, much may fairly be attri- 
buted to the heat naturally generated 
by long-continued opposition ; much 
to the effects of disappointed hope ; 
much to the resentment excited and 
justified by insolent and virulent oppo- 
sition. . But the unfortunate state of 
the public mind m Irelaad, is, above 
all things, imputable to the conduct of 
government ; for that there are per- 
sons in Ireland who look to revolution 
imd separation cannot be denied. The 
separatists are, however, neither nu- 
merous, nor, in themselves, fonnida* 
ble; and they tremble at the pros- 
pect of the adjustment of the catnolic 
claims, as a measure deadly to their 
views. Is it a wise policy, is it a course 
which any government can justify to 
the country, to recruit for these public 
enemies, by endeavouring to embody 
the legitimate claitiis of the catholics 
with their wild and pernicious pro« 
jects i Is it not madness to oppose the 
same blind and indiscriminate resits* 
ance to the honest objects of the great 
untainted landed and commercial in- 
terests of the catholic people, and to 
affect to confound them, in a common 
cause, with those miserable enemies of 
public freedom and safety i — But this 
measure, it was admitted, cannot be 
finally and satisfactorily adjusted, un- 
less some arrangement shall be made 
with respect to the Roman catholic 
clergy, and some security afforded to 
the state against foreign interfercBoe. 
Such security may be afforded, with- 
out interfering, in anv degree, with the 
essentials of their religion ; and if soj 
the mere circutnstahce of its being re- 
quired is a sufficient reason for con- 
ceding^ it. This is not a struggle for 
the triumph of one party of the state 
over another ; it is a great national sa- 
crifice of mutual prejudices for the 
common good ; and any opportunity 
of gratify ing the prote&tant mind should 

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be eagerly seized by the catholic, even 
if the conditions required were uncall- 
ed for by apy real or well-founded ap- 
prehension* The state has a right to 
require some fair security against fo* 
reien influence in its domestic concerns. 
What this secuntv may be, provided 
it shall be efj^tua^ ought to be left to 
the option of the catholic body. As 
a veto has been objected to, let it not 
be required ; but let the security be 
afforded, either by domestic nomina- 
tion of the clergy, or in any shape or 
form, which shafi exclude the practical 
effect of foreign interference. Let 
them be liberafiy provided for by the 
state ; let them be natives of the coun- 
try, and educated in the country ; and 
let the full and plenary exercise of 
spiritual authority by the Pope, whidi 
forms an essential part of their reli- 

£'ous discipline, remain in all its force, 
eave to tneir choice the mode of re- 
conciling these principles, and stand 
not upon the manner, if the thing is 
done. Pursue this course, put this 
measure into the hands of those in 
whom the catholics can place confi- 
dence, or give them such a parliament- 
ary ple^e, that they may see that the 
accomplishment of their wishes is de^ 
pendent on their own good sense and 
moderation, and they wul not be want- 
ing to contribute their part of this 
great national work of strength and 
union. In all events, parliament will 
have discharged its duty ; it will have 
given satisfaction to the honest and to 
the reasonable ; it will have separated 
the sound from the unsound, and left 
the bifirot, or the incendiary, stripped 
of all his terrors, by deprivmg him of 
all his grievances. 

Such were the views which were 
ivow taken by the advocates of this 
great question. The opponents of the 
measure did not distinguish themselves 
greatly on this occasion ; and the mo- 
tion, after two adjournments, was car- 
ried by a majority of 264 to 224r. A 

committee was appomted to arrange 
and determine tne different clauses 
which were to be introduced into the 
act. Mr Grattan, who still took the 
lead, gave, on a subsequent occanon, a 
general view of the various provisions 
of which it was intended that this le- 
gislative measure should consist. Ilie 
catholics vrere to be admitted to sit m 
both houses of parliament, and to hold 
all offices, civil and military, except- 
those connected vrith the great aeal^ 
and that of Lord Lieutenant of Ire- 
land« They were to be denied, hoir* 
ever, the right of presentation to any 
living in the churcn, in an university^ 
or public school. The oaths, which 
the law now requires to be taken by 
persons in office, were to be dispensed 
vrith in the case of Roman Catho-^ 
lies ; and, instead of them, a new oath 
was to be taken, presenting, it was 
hoped, nothing to which a loyal cm*' 
thoHc could object. It contained an 
engagement to do nothing which could 
be mjurious to the British constitution 
or to the established church, and a dis- 
avowal of certain doctrines of the Ro- 
mish belief, which appeared inconsist- 
ent with the obligations of society. 
Roman catholic clergymen were to take 
an oath that they would not recom- 
mend, sanction, or concur in the ap- 
pointment or consecration of any bi- 
shop, of whose loyalty they were not 
welt informed. The episcopal func«> 
tions were to be conferred only upon 
a natural-bom subject, who had been 
resident in the kingdom five years im- 
mediately previous to consecration.— 
MrCannine proposed also that no Ro* 
man cathobc bishop should, in future, 
be appointed without a certificateof loy. 
alty m>m five English or Irish catho-' 
lie peers appointed by the crown. All 
bulls or briefs received from Rome 
were to be submitted to the exami- 
nation of commissioners, consisting 
of the same catholic peers, two Roman ^ 
catholic bishops^ the Lord Chancdlor,' 

Digitized by 





■ad one of the eecre U riee instate.— ^To 
time propoflitions it was understood 
tkic Mr orattan and his friends g^fe 
nenr consult* 

ETery^ thing had hitherto proceeded 
in a piosperoas train ; and the belief 
became general that the bill would be 
earned through with little opposition. 
Its istCf howerer, was yery different. 
When the oonunittee came to that 
danse, by which catholic members 
were to be admitted to sit in both 
houses of parlkmenty Mr Abbot, the 
Speaker, made a long and eloquent 
oration: He declared his willingness 
that the professors of this religion 
shoiU be adonitted to offices in the ar* 
my and navy, and that the soldier 
ahoald be protected in the exercise of 
his wonbip ; but he deprecated their 
admission into parliament, where an 
able and eloquent leader might acquire 
the most dangerous ascendency. He 
warned the House against opening the 
iqod-gates of innoration, which might 
not be easOy closed ; and he refeired 
to circumstances, which gave reason to 
believe that even these ample oonces- 
■oas would give no satisfaction, on ac« 
count of the conditions with which 
they were accompanied. This anima** 
ted speech, from a person sddom ac- 
customed to open his lips, made a 
itrong impression on the House ; and 
the chknse was rejected, though by the 
BBjority only of 251 against 247. 

TUs result was greatly aided by 
Qthertmponant occurrences. ThebilC 
bemg founded upon certain securities 
to be eiven by tne Roman catholics, 
was, of course, nugatory, unless they 
agreed to give these securities. Their 
cooaeot ought indeed to have been ob- 
tained before the bill was brought into 
parliament ; but no sooner were its 
proviaions made known on the other 
nde of the diannel, than they became 
the object of utter disgust and repro- 
bation. The catholic body immeduite- 
lyassembkd} «id expressed these feeh 

ings in the most decided and unquall* 
fied manner. In vain did Mr Grattan 

insist, that the report of iu proceed* 
ings was misrepresented, and even for* 
ged ; that there existed in Ireland no 
spirit inimical to the bill. Every new 
arrival brought new proofs of its pre. 
valence. Besides an aggregate meet* 
ing, an assembly of bishops was held, 
which spoke the same sentiments in a 
manner still less measured. Lan^age 
seemed unequal to express the dismay 
and consternation with which the pro- 
posals filled them. The result of Mr 
Abbot's motion was celebrated in Ire* 
land as a triumph. The most bitter 
enemy to the object of the bill did not 
feel any exultation at its failure, to be 
compared to that which was excited in 
the breasts of those for whose relief 
and benefit it was solely intended. 

It seems impossible to deny th^ 
egregious mismanagement of those by 
wnom the bill was drawn up and dH 
gested. As the whole was founded 
upon certain conditions, to which the 
catholics were to agree, they ought, 
before any legislative proceedings took 
place, to have ascertained whether these 
conditions would meet with general ac- 
ceptance. There could not be the 
smallest difficulty or impropriety in do- 
ing this. These communications might 
have been committed to writing ; and 
had the catholic leaders then attempt- 
ed, from any motive, to retract or de- 
ny their consent, Mr Grattan would 
have been able to produce full proof 
of its having once been given. No- 
thing of this kind, however, was done, 
and Mr Grattan and his friends found 
themselves placed in the most awkward 

Such was the result of the proceed- 
ings in parliament during the present 
session for girine relief to the catholica 
of Ireland. The demagogues in Ire- 
land, however, continued their labours,, 
and made every effort to inflame the 
nunds of the people. Among other 

Digitized by 




ad<^ed by thefn, they 
tliought fit to come to the 6>llowiiig 
resolution) which excited the utmost 
litooi^ment :•*-<* Resolvedy That it 
be an insttiiction to the catholic boardf 
to consider of the constitutional fitness 
and propriety of sending an earnest 
and pressing memorial to the Spanish 
Cortesy stating to them the enslaved 
« and depressed state of their fellow ca* 
Uiolics in Ireland, with respect to their 
ezclusiony on the score of their reli- 
gion, from the benefits of the British 
constitudon, and imploring their fa- 
vourable intercession with their ally, 
our most gracious sovereign. "-^It is 
needless to add, that this resolution 
was viewed in England with contempt 
and indignation. 

The public prints, in the service of 
the board, teemed with the wildest 
rhapsodies. In one of them it was hint- 
ed that Lord Wellington had designs 
on the crown of Spain, and was ready 
to become a catholic. The obvious 
tendency of this article was to sow dis- 
tension between the British and Spa- 
nish nations. In another of these vile 
performances, all men belonging to 
orange lodges were menaced with ruin 
in their di&rent trades, and a plan to 
this effect was openly avowed. In a 
third, a supposed intention of the 
Orangemen ( men attached to the protes- 
tant constitution of the country) to 
parade round the statue of King Wil- 
liam, was stigmatised in the most odi- 
ous language. The Irish were often 
told that they alone atchieved every 
triumph of our arms, — that the Eng- 
lish and Scots had little to do with 
them. Because the frigate which took 
the Chesapeake is named from an 
Irish river, her crew, it was pompous* 
ly announced, had been chiefiy collect- 
f d from the banks of the Shannon.— 
Such were the mischievous absurdities 
which these patriots addressed to the 
prejudices and credulity of the vulgar. 

The transsKTfions of t^ catholic 
board had great influ^ce in aliena- 
ting from the [Petitioners many of their 
best friends ; for, notwithstanding 
the ingenious apologies which were 
made for the conduct of this strapge 
association, no naan could hesitate^ 
while <« the Board" spoke, without 
contradiction, as che orffan of the ca- 
tholic body, to comprSiend both in 
the same censure and condemnation. 
** It is not enough /it was justly obser- 
ved) that the catholics should have 
their representative body, their con- 
gress and convention, and thus erect 
a kind of distinct government within 
this realm ; but this convention must 
also send out its foreign ambassadors, 
A— form foreign alliances^— and fulfil att 
the acts of an independent governments 
Is it nothing that the catholics of Ire- 
land have delegated their influence to 
a body of men systematically organi- 
zed, not to convey their wishes to par- 
liament by petition, but to fill the 
functions of government, to act in the 
name, and by the authority, of the ca* 
tholicAof Ireland ; to be the deposito- 
ry of their complaints, and the avenger 
of their wrongs ; and so to represent 
them as that through the Board the 
whole body of catholics may be treat- 
ed vrith either by a foreign power, or a 
parliamentary party ? Is it nothing that 
a body exists, which can wield both 
the passions and the physical force of 
the catholic part of Ireland against the 
government at pleasure ; which can 
lawn upon a prince when supposed to be 
favourable to their views, and offer him 
unconstitutional assistance ; or when 
opposed to their claims can menace his 
government, and turn the whole tide 
of popular prejudice against him ? And, 
to complete the whole, is it nothing, 
that a body should exist, which, ha- 
ving given plan and system to the whole 
mass of religious discontent in Ireland, 
shall at length stretch forth its arms to 

Digitized by 



(ioreigB statet that they muf etpoute a deep impression on the nrinds of aO 

ks ctntey recognise its existence, and good men ; and the plan of catholic 

fspport it agatnK its own sovereign ^* emancipation, which had abeady at« 

It was impossihle to resist the force tained such maturity, thus miscarriedt 

of foch reflections. The alarming spi- chiefly by the folly and violence of 

lit nyuiifeeted by the catholics made thoee for whose lebef it was iat€Qded» 

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jtmerican Affairs. Dedaration hy the British Government of the Causes and 
Origin of the War with America. Discussions in Parliament on the Subject. 
Events of the War. 

The British government had nnwil* 
lingly embarked in the war with Ame- 
ricai and was still desirous of bringing 
the contest to a speedy and amicable 
conclusion* With this view negocia- 
tions had been opened during the last 
year ; but such were the pretensions of 
the American government, that every 
attempt at conciliation was frustrated. 
The British ministers were anxious to 
justify their conduct, on this occasion, 
in the face of the world ; and to cxhi- 
bit a fair account of the oririn and 
causes of the war. On the 9th of Ja- 
■uary, therefore, they issued a Decla- 
ration on this subject, which contained 
mn excellent summary of the whole of 
our transactions with America, and an 
ample vindication of the conduct of 
Great Britain. 

The Declaration stated, that no de- 
sire of conquest could be imputed to 
Great Britain ; that her conunercial 
interests were on the side of peace, if 
war could have been avoided; that 
the had throughout acted towards 
the United Sutes of America with 
a spirit of amity, forbearance, and 
conciliation. That it had been die in- 
viuiable object of the ruler of France 

to destroy the power and independence 
of the British empire, as the chief ob- 
stacle to the accomplishment of his 
ambitious designs ; that he first con- 
templated the jpossibilitv of assembling 
such a naval force in the channel, as, 
combined with a numerous flotilla, 
should enable him to disembark ia 
England an army sufficient, in his con- 
ception, to subjugate this country ; but 
by the adoption of an enlarged and 
prorident system of internal defence, 
and by the valour of his majesty's 
fleets and armies, this design was en- 
tirely frustrated, and the naval force of 
France, after the most signal defeats, 
was compelled to retire from the ocean. 
That an attempt was then made to ef- 
fectuate the same purpose by othei 
means ; a system was brought forward, 
by which the ruler of France hoped tc 
annihilate the commerce of Great Bri 
tain, to shake her public credit, and tc 
destroy her revenue ; to render useless 
her maritime superiorit^r, and to tc 
avail himself of his continental ascen 
dancy, as to constitute himself, in \ 
great measure, the arbiter of the ocean 
notwithstanding the destruction of hi 

Digitized by 





That with this view, by the decree 
of Berlia, followed by that of Mikn, 
he declared the British territories to 
be in a state of blockade ; and all com-, 
mercey or even correspondence, with 
Great Britain was prohibited. He de- 
creed that every vessel and cargo which 
had entered, or was found proceeding 
to a British port, or which, under any 
drcamstances, had been visited by a 
British ship of war, should be lawful 
prize. He declared all British goods 
and produce, wherever found, and 
however acquired, subject to confisca- 
tion. He further denationalized the 
flag of all neutral ships which should 
be found offending against these his 
decrees ; and he gave to this project 
of universal tyranny, the name of 
•* the Continental System." 

That under circumstances of unpa- 
ralleled orovocation, his majesty had 
abstained from any measure which the 
ordinary rules of the law of nations 
did not fully warrant. Never was the 
maritime superiority of a belligerent 
over the enemy more complete and de- 
cided than was that of Great Bri« 
tain ; and France had already tram- 
pled so openly and systematically on 
the most sacred rights of neutral pow- 
ers, as might weU have justified the 
placing her out of the pale of civilized 
nations. Tet, in this extreme case. 
Great Britain had so used her naval 
ascendancy, that her enemy could find 
no just cause of complaint ; and in or- 
der to give to these uwless decrees the 
appearance of retaliation, the ruler of 
France was obliged to advance princi- 
ples of maritime law, unsanctioned by 
any other authority than his own ar* 
iMtrary will. 

That against these decrees his ma- 
jesty protested and appealed ; he call- 
ed opon the United States to assert 
their own rights, and to vindicate their 
independence, thus menaced and at- 
tacked. The order of January 1807> 
wu then isauedi as an act of mitigated 

retaliation, after which followed the 
order of the 11th November, of the 
same year. At the same time his ma- 
jesty intimated his readiness to repeal 
the orders in council, so soon as France 
should rescind her decrees, and return 
to the accustomed principles of mari* 
time warfare ; and afterwards, the 
operation of the orders in council was« 
b^ an order issued in April 1809, li- 
mited to a blockade of France, and 
of the countries subjected to her im- 
mediate dominion. — That systems of 
violence, oppression, and tyranny, can 
never be suppressed^ if the power a* 
gainst which such injustice is exerci- 
sed, be debarred from the risht of full 
and adequate retaliation. — That the 
government of the United States did 
not fail to remonstrate a^nst the or* 
ders in council of Great Britain. Ap« 
plying most unjustly the same measure 
of resentment to the aggressor, and to 
the party aggrieved, it adopted mea- 
sures of commercial resistance against 
both ..-a system of resistance which^ 
however varied in the successive acts 
of embargo, non-intercourse, or non« 
importation, was evidently unequal ia 
its operation, and principally levelled 
against the superior commerce and ma- 
ritime power of Great Britain. 

That the same partiality towards 
France was observable in negeciatioa 
as in the measures of alleged resist* 
ance.— -Application was made to both 
belligerents for a revocation of their 
respective edicts ; but the terms in 
which these applications were made 
were widely different.— Of France was 
required a revocation only of the Ber* 
lin and Milan decrees, although many 
other edicts, grossly violating the neu^ 
tral commerce of the United States^ 
had been promulgated by that power* 
No security was demanded, that the 
Berlin and Milan decrees, even if re- 
voked, should not, under some other 
form, be re-estabUshed ; and a direct 
engagement was offered, that upoa 

Digitized by 



snch retocation the Americati go- 
vernmeat would take part in the war 
against Great Britain, if Great ^ri- 
tain did not immediately rescind her 
orders. No corresponding en^ge- 
fluent was offered to Great Bntaiui 
of whom it wasrequiredy not only that 
the orders in council should be repeal- 
cdy but that np others of a similar na- 
ture should be issued, and that the 
blockade of May 1806 should be 
also abandoned. This blockade, esta- 
blished and enforced according to ac- 
customed practice, had not been ob- 
jected to by the United Sutes at the 
time it was issued. Its provisions 
were on the contrary represented by 
the Anierican minister resident in 
London at the time, to have been so 
framed, as to afford, in his judgment, 
si proof of the friendly disposition of 
the British cabinet towards the Uni- 
ted States. — Great Britain was thus 
called upon to abandon one of her 
most important maritime ri^lits, 6y 
acknowledging the order of blockade 
fa question to be one of the edicts 
which violated the commerce of the 
{Jnited States, although it had never 
been so considered in the previous ne* 
gociations, and although the president 
of the United States had recently con- 
sented to abrogate the non-intercourse 
act, on the sole condition of the orders 
in council beinjr revoked, thereby 
distinctly admitting these orders to be 
the only edicts, \^nich fell within the 
contemplation of the law, under which 
be acted.—- That a proposition so hos- 
tile to Great Britain could not but be 
encouraging to the pretensions of the 
enemy i as, by thus alledgine that the 
blockade of May 1806 was illegal, the 
American government virtually justi« 
fied, so far as depended on them, the 
French decrees. 

That after this proposition had been 
made, the French minister for foreign 
affairs, if not in concert with the A- 
tnferican government, at least m con- 

formity :iirith its viewsy in ^ dispatck 
dated the 5th of August 1810, and 
addressed to the American minister 
resident at Paris, stated that the Qerlin 
and Milan decrees were revoked, ai^a 
that their operation would cease froni 
the 1st day of November following, 
provided his majesty would revoke 
his orders in council, and renounce the 
new principles of blockade ^ or that 
the United States would cause their 
rights to be respected ; meaning there- 
by, that they would resist the retalia- 
tory measures of Great Britain.— 
That although the repeal of the French 
decrees thus announced was evidently 
contingent, either on concessions to 
be made by Great Britain, (conces^ 
sions to which it was obvious Grea( 
Britain could not submit) or on mea- 
sures to be adopted by the Unite4 
States of Amerka, the American 
President at once considered the re- 
peal as absolute. Under that pre« 
tence the non-importation act was 
strictly enforced against Great Bri- 
tain, whilst the ships of war and mer- 
chant ships of the enemy were re- 
ceived into the harbours of America.-^ 
The American government assuming 
the repeal of the French decrees to b^ 
absolute and effectual, most unjustly 
reouired Great Britain, in conformity 
to ner declarations, to revoke her or- 
ders in council. The British govern- 
ment denied that the repeal, which 
was announced in the letter of the 
French minister for foreign affairs, 
was such as ought to satisfy Great 
Britain ; and in order to ascertain the 
true character of the measure adopted 
by France, the government of the 
United States was called upon to pro- 
duce the instrument, by which the al- 
ledged repeal of the French decrees 
had been effected. If these decree^ 
were really revoked, such an instru* 
ment must exist, and rto satisfactory 
reason could be given for withhold- 
ing it. • ■ 

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That «t feogtht oo the 2l8t of May 
ISlSy* and not before, the American 
smuater in London did produce a 
copy» or at least what purported to 
%e a copyt of auch an iDatrument. 
It profcMed to bear date the ^th of 
A^ I8II9 long snbseauent to the 
di^tch of the Trench minister for 
lioragn affairs of the 5th of August 
ISIO9 or eTen the day named thereinV 
viz. Uie Ist November following, when 
the operation of the French decrees 
was to cease. This instrument ex- 
pressly dedared that these French 
decreea were repealed in con^quence 
of the AjDerican legisUture havihgi by 
their act of the 1st of March 1811, 
provided that British ships and mer* 
chandize should be excluded from the 
porta and harbours of the United 

That by this instrument, (the only 
docnment produced by Arnica as a 
repeal of the French decrees, 1 it ap- 
P«ued beyppd a possibility of doubt 
Or cavil, that the alledged repeal of 
the French decrees was conditional, 
aa Great Britain had asserted; and 
not absolute or final, as had been 
Detained by America; that they 
vrere not repealed at the time they 
vrere stated to be repealed bv the A* 
■a erican government ; that tney were 
not repea&d in conformity with a pro- 
position simultaneously made to both 
belligerents, but in consequence of a 
previous act on the part of the A- 
merican government in favour of one 
belUgereBt to the prejudice of the 
other. That the American govern- 
neat having adopted measures restric- 
tive upon the commerce of both bel- 
ligerents, in consequence of edicts is- 
sued by both, rescinded these measures 
as they aff^rted that power which was 
the aggi^essor, whilst it put them in 
full operation aranst the party ag- 
grieved, although the edicts of both 
powers continued in force ; and, lastly, 
fh^t they excluded the ships of war 

belonging to one belligerent, whilst 
they admitted into their ports and bar* 
bpurs the ships of war belon^ncr t^ 
the other, in viplatibn of one of th« 
plainest and most essential duties of a 
neutral nation. 

That althourii the instmmeift thua 
produced was uaUe tp the stronffest 
suspicions, yet as it was presented by 
the Apierican minister, the British go- 
vemment cpnditionally revoked the 
orders in council ; and in order to 
provide for the CQUtingency of a de- 
claration of war on the part of tl^ 
United States, previous to the arrival 
in America of the said order of revo* 
cation, instructions were sent to hia 
majesty's minister plenipotentiary ac* 
credited to the United States (the 
execution of wl^ch instructions, in 
consequence of die discontinuance of 
Mr Foster's functions, i^s at a sub- 
sequent period entrusted to admiral 
Sir John Borlase Warren) directinjjr 
him to propose a cessation of hostili- 
ties should they have OHnmenced; 
and furthet to offer a stmuitaneoua 
repeal of the orders in council on one 
side, and of the restrictive laws on 
British ships and commerce on the 
other* They were also respectively 
empowered to acquaint the American 
government, in reply to any enquiries 
with respect to the blockade of May 
1806, that whilst the British govern- 
ment must continue to maintain its le- 
gality, yet in point of fact this par- 
ticular blockade had been discontinued 
for a length of time, and that his ma- 
jesty's government had no intention 
of recurring to this, or to any other 
of the blockades of the enemy's ports, 
without a new notice to neutral 
powers in the usual form* 

That the An^crican government, 
before receiving intimation of the 
course adopted by Great Britain, had 
in fact proceeded to the extreme mea- 
sure of declaring war, and issuing let- 
ters of marque, notwithstanding they 

Digitized by 



were previously in possession of the 
report of the Frencn minister for fo- 
reign affairs of the 12th of March 
18129 promulgating anew the Berlin 
and Milan decrees^ as fundamental laws 
of the French empire. That in a ma- 
sifestOy accompanying their declara* 
tion of hostilities, in addition to the 
former complaints aeainst the orders 
of council, a long fist of grievances 
was brou^t forward ; some trivial in 
themselves, others which had been 
mutually adjusted, but none of them 
such as were ever before alledged by 
the American government to be 

Sounds for war. And that, as if to 
row additional obstacles in the way 
of peace, the American congress at 
the same time passed a law, prohibit- 
ing all intercourse with Great Britain, 
and this law was declared unaltera- 
ble until congress should reassemble. 

That the president of the United 
States didindeed propose to Great Bri- 
tain an armistice, but on the most extra- 
vagant conditions, viz. that the right of 
•earch totakefrom American merchant 
vessels, British seamen,thenatural bora 
subjects of his majesty, should be a- 
bandoned, and that indemnity should 
be given for all captures under such 
blockades as the American govern- 
ment was pleased to describe as ille- 
gal. — ^That the proposal of an armis- 
tice, and of a simultaneous repeal of 
the restrictive measures on both sides 
subsequently made by the command- 
ing omcer of his majesty's naval forces 
on the American coast, was received 
in the same hostile spirit by the go- 
vernment of the United States. The 
right of search on the part of Great 
Britain, a right which she acknow- 
ledges on the part of America, was 
to be abandoned as a preliminarr, al- 
though America had never explained 
the nature of the regulations which 
she proposed to substitute in its place. 
That while this proposition, trans- 
mitted through the Britiah admiialy 

vn» under discussion in America, an- 
other communication on the subject 
of an armistice was unofficially made 
to the British government in this 
country, by an agent who had no au- 
thority to bind the government of the 
United States, and whose proposition 
was of course declined. 

That Great Britain now felt her« 
self called upon to declare the leading 
principles by which her conduct had 
been regulated in the transactions con- 
nected with these discusdons. 

That she can never acknowledge 
any blockade to be illegal, which has 
been duly notified, and is supported by 
an adequate force, merely upon tlie 
ground of its extent, or because the 
ports or coasts blockaded are not at 
the same time invested by land. She 
can never admit, that neutral trade 
with Great Britain can be constituted 
a public crime, the commission of which 
can expose the ships of any power to 
be denationalized. She can never ad- 
mit, that she can be debarred of her 
right of just and necessary retaliation, 
through the fear of eventually affecting 
the interest of a neutral. Or that, in 
the exercise of the undoubted and hi- 
therto undisputed right of searching 
neutral merchant vessels in time of war, 
the impressment of British seamen, 
when K>und therein, can be deefloed 
any violation of a neutral flag. 

That there is no right more clearly 
established, than that which a sove- 
reign has to the allegiance of his sub- 
jects, more especially in time of war- 
if a similarity of language and manners 
may make the exercise of this right 
more liable to partial mistakes* and 
occasional abuse, when practised to- 
wards vessels of the United States* the 
same circumstances make it also a right* 
with the exercise of which, in regard 
to such vessels, it is more difficult to 
dispense. But, if to the practice of 
the United Sutes to harbour British 
seamen, be added their asiumed right 

Digitized by 





ntmaBer the nihgimn of BatMi 
MtbjKf, aoA tlwa to cattod tlit jtm* 
ic&m of tlKir k^fitioMte aoferom 
lif acta of mtmhratkxi 9Mi oarti& 
ciaH of c ii iMiMh ip, idndi thef pm. 
lad ta be aa iraKd out of tfceir ewft 
tcRtefey aa within k, it ia olnriant that 
toateadoB thaa aaciaot right of Great 
* to adflut Itoa aovel pfe* 
of tht Unifeecl 8latt% would 
fe to eap ea e to daa|^ tke rerj f oun* 
Atinn a of ovr mafitmr ativaffth. 

That wheaevtr tke dedaratioa of 
tke Ihote^ Statoa mmw have aiicrted^ 
Ona Biitain new did deaumd tint 
flioald faice Britidi B(Huni£io^ 
iaiae Fnuce ; aod she fbraaattj 
her wjUn^pDcai to nivMOy air 
is coQccrt with the United 
the afaleoiy by whieh a cona* 
; with the eoaanr had 
the Uaitad fltatci 
towards her,^ and tewanh 
FjiBBCcy wath real unpaitidity* 

^Phet- the jeverooMot of 
2 the diffei«M:aa between 
aet iniaiiniealjkij had oe ri|^t to ne^ 
tieetheaffivof iheChasapohe. The 
" rinstoaoa, oo the pait 
r, was ackwowledgtd^ 
was disaeprosed* and a r^ 
Mian wwa reginadf tendned bjr 
TesteTy ewtht partof hia aiajcsty^ 
* bf the government ef the 
-That the Amariean 
waa not lesa unwammtcd 
n^ to the nuasion of Mr 
nssioa vndanahea withrat 

by Mr Fosldr to the AaMiitfia 

even Lnowledgetof 
emnwnt, and which 


waa anthofistd larmallj 
to &a«ow.— -That the 
^ of eiciring the Indians to of* 
faasBae aiea ai i i rs against the United 
Scatea waa efpally void of fbuoda^ 
tiaa. BeiEoce the war began^ apolicj 
the aost opposite had been onitarndT- 
paaawad, aadapioof of diis wastea* 

▼M. Tl. PAKT I. 

That dthaa^di saA went the 
ef the war pat forward by the y ip n i 
nent <rf Aaasrica» vet the realteaigift of 
the cootest wany be f oiiad in that spa- 
rit wUch had leag unhappily actaalad 
the couacis of 3ie United Stafeaa^ 
their marhed partkdity ia palliaiiar 
and assisting the ag g iawi f e tyranny 6t 
Fiaaoe ;thew aystenntie endeavour, to 
kiaaae Ae. pcajde againat the define 
sive measures of Great Britain^ their 
nngeneroos coodiiet towaeda SiMJ% 
the nthaate i% of Great Britain; 
and their onworthy desertion of the 
cause of other ncnttial nation^ fiar 
whidi America had been so justhr 
cowdemned in the eyes of the worl^ 
It was through theprevaknoe of such 
coaadk that America had hose assoh 
entedmpoMcy with Fcaaoe, aadoea^ 
mitted in war against Great Britain.-"- 
And under what conduct on die oait 
of Ftaace had the govermnent ot the 
Umted States thus lent itself to the 
enemy? The contemptuous vie h tio a 
of the commerdal treaty ef the year 
1800^ between Fiance and riie Umtad 
Stateei the tveadieaoita scisttrc of all 
American vessels and caigoea in every 
harbour adbject to the coatroal ef 
France ; the tyrannical prioctples of 
the Beriia and Miba decasees, aad the 
coafiscadoBS under diem ; the subsa* 
quent coodemnationa under the Raa^ 
booUlet decree, antedated or coooealed 
to vender it the mere effectual f die 
Fmcheoauaercial reguladoas which 
rendered the traflb ef the United 
States with France ahnast iHuserf ; 
the burning of their merchant slypa 
at aea, k>Mf after the i" _ ' 
the French d sc i ce s th es e , 
similar outrages, were the ia 
which France held out to conciliatedie 
friendship of Amsrica. AUtheaaaota 
of violence on the part of France pi»- 
duced from the government of the 
t H 

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Uuited Statety onlf such com pl a iu tt 
«8 ended in acquiescence and tubmi^ 
ai«Hi, or were accomptnied by nigges* 
tkms for enabling France to give the 
aeotiblaace of a legal form to her 
liturpations by coBTertMff tfaem into 
municipal regalationt.*^That dut £s- 
position of thegovemoieBt of the U» 
niaed States-^thia complete tufoaer- 
viency to the rukr of France — this 
lioftiie temper towards Great Britain^ 
were evident in almost ewry page of 
tiie o0icial convspondenee of the A- 
mfvican with the French government. 

Against this course of iooiiducty the 
leal cause of the wai% Great Britain 
aolemnly protested. While contend- 
iaor against France, in defence not 
'Omy of her own liberties» but of those 
iof the world, she was entitled to look 
for a far different result. Disapposated 
ffrthisexpectatioafaowever. Great Bri- 
tain declared her unalterable resolutioo 
to pursue the pohcy which she. had so 
long maintained, in repelling isjuatice 
and in supporting the general rights 
of nations* 

This declaration havrng been laid 
l>efore parliament, an address was mo^tf- 
ed to the Prince Regent, approving of 
its prmdples, and expressing a deter- 
mination to support the executive go- 
iremment in tlw conduct of the war. 
There was but little diffiereace of opi- 
nion on this point ; the principles avow- 
ed by government could neither be 
mistaken nor impeached ; but the want 
of vigour which had been discovered 
in the conduct of the war was severely 
mnaigned, even bv some eminent per* 
sons not unfriendly to the administnu 
tioo«— One thousand soldiers, it was 
observed, fouror five frigates to gruard 
an extent of coast of 1500 miles, and a 
levenueof twomillioBsand ahalf of doU 
lars have been described as the means 
physical and'pecuniary of which the U- 
fluted States were in possession when 
they declared war against this country. 
Undoubtedly no man could hear the 

statement without exclaiming, ** And 
oouU a nation so circumstanced vea- 
ture.ujpon a war with the mighty em- 
pire ot Great Britain with the moat 
distant prospect of euceessP' Un- 
Induly it did. The unwelcome^ truth 
oodd not be conoeakd. Two of 
these four or five firigates had captured 
two frigates from the Brilash navy. 
Vigorous measurea becoming this great 
nation might have averted disasters 
which must have the effect of pro- 
longing hostilities. It was no answer 
to say that our navy vras immense, 
but Uiat it was proportionablv extend- 
ed on the different stations. The natioo 
complainednot of thenavaldepartment* 
but of the policy which controuled tta 
operations. It complained that the 
■arm which should have launched the 
thundeibolt was occupied in guiding 
the pen ; that admiral .Warren vraa 
iMSSed in negoctating, when he ought 
.to have been burning, sinking, and de^ 
stroying^ AdmiralWarren sailed from 
^diia coimtry in the middle of August, 
and on the 27th of September he 
«eached Halifax with his squadron, 
:wherehe emploved himsdf in writing 
iiispatches to the American govern- 
aKnt ; while Commodore Rogers on 
the 10th «f October sailed unn^ested 
from Boston. Butwev^ted,itseema, 
to be quite sure that we were actuallyr 
at war. Granting, for argument's 
sake, that in- the first instance there 
mi§^ not be full conviction of the 
certainty of war, yet even after the 
American declaration was received in 
the end of July, no hostile measure 
was resorted to by this country, till 
the 14th of October, when letters o1 
marque were issued, upon the receipt 
of the intelU^nce (and, as migtM 
be not unfairly suspected, in conae< 
quence of that intelligence) that th^ 
Cruerriere frigate had been capturec 
by the Americans. — ^What ivaa ilu 
next advance towards actual blockade 
The blockade of the Chesapeak w» 

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^etennined i^>onf and the order in 
eoQBcil annouDcing that hlokade was 
isoed ; when ? — the day after the ar- 
mal of the intelligence that the Ma- 
cedooian, another of our firigatei, had 
oDen into the power of the repuhlic. 
The loss of these two fine vessels pro- 
duced a sensation in the country scarce- 
ly to be equalled by the most violent 
coQvnbiosi of nature. No one could 
attrftute the slightest blame to our 
gdiaat sailors ; they always do their 
Sity ; but neither was it possible to 
agree with thoae who complained that 
tSe consternation throughout Great 
Britain was CTeater than the occasion 
jtistified. Whp cooid represent the 
losses as insignificant^ and the feelings 
of indignation occasioned by them as 
ez^g;gerated and extravagant? That 
iadignation was a wholesome feeling 
which ought to be cherished and 
■aiiitaiiie£ It could not be too deep- 
It felt that the sacred spell of the^ in- 
nadbih'ty of the British navy was bro* . 
kcB hy those unfortunate captures; 
asd however speedily we might all wish 
the war to terminate, the desire could . 
Qot be considered as sanguinary and. 
QoiBefiiig, that it might not be con* 
cioded before we had re-established the 
daracter of our naval superiority, and 
■Bothered in victories the disasters 
which we had now to lament, and^ 
to whidi we were so little habitual' 
ted. — If it be true, in. general, that . 
iadedsion and delay are the parents of 
More ; that they take every possible 
daoot of detriment to the cause in 
wioch they are employed, and afford . 
cmy advauitage and encouragement to / 
the adversary ; it was peculiarly true, ; 
is the present instance, that prompti- 
tade ud vigour afforded the surest 
pledge of success in the war. If* 
while the elections were pending, the 
nsoh of which was to pbce Mr Ma- < 
^SQs, the arch-enemy of this coun*. 

2, io the president's chair, a decisive 
w Juid ta«en struck by this country^ 

the tide of popular opinion in America 
might have been turned, and the con* 
sequences of a long and ruinous war 
might have been avoided. It was to be* 
lamented, for the general happiness o£^ 
mankind, that no such vifforous exer« 
tion was attenopted ; for if some signal' 
act of vengeance had been inflicted on 
any part of the United Statea, expostd' 
to maritime attack, but particularlv on 
any portion of their territory wnere. 
there prevailed the matest attachment' 
to the interests of France, it woiUd 
have at least been a useful warning, and 
might have p r evente d the continuance' 
of the contest, if it had not prevented 
its commencement. Forbearance in war 
is wholly impolitic, and where vigour 
has a tendency to decide the contest, 
hesitation is cruelty.— *Hostilitieswere, • 
however, continued, although upon 
such a small scale as suited the resour- . 
ces of America. The American fri- ' 
gates were still distinguished by activi- 
ty and success ; and the British were 
to be again astonished by the advantage ^ 
which one of these was to gain over 
their own navy, so long deemed invin- * 
able. The British frigate Java, of SS 
guns, sailed from Spithead early in No- 
vember of the preceding year, for the * 
purpose of conveyiag Lieut.^General 
Hislop to Bombay. She was met off 
the coast of Brazil by the Constitu- 
tion ; and after a furious action, in which 
Captain Lambert and many oiF his offi- * 
cers and men were killed, she was set 
on fire' and blown up. To the superior 
weight of metal oi the Constitution, 
and the enterprize of the Americans in ^ 
pushing out on sucSi distant and unex- 
pected attempts, was to be attributed 
this melancholy event. Yet it did seem 
extraordinary, that, with so gteata Bri- 
tish force on the Am^erican coatyt, the 
frigates of the latter power should have 
had the good fortune of so frequently ' 
sailing from and returning into their • 
own ports, without being met by any 
of the cruisers on that station. 

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Suck were tbe TCflflCtioM iery gese-' 
nUj nide oo the tobifciot tM Daval 
HfiM witb AmtflicakF—Of tlie miUtarf 
•vfiitt ot the )reir» a ^cry brief sttOK 
MfT witt be tiificient. 

Tbe Aaerica&ft made eztnoidiBery 

dfortt to retmte the •vtrwhelmisig 

and shaiMdEul disaatcra of the fanner 

oiipaiga ) and the^* wefe aoon able, 

from a mmeraaa thouch scattered 

popuhttioQ*. to re*aaaeia£le an annf 

wUdh greadf Qotmuabeied that ran- 

oed uader the Britnh itandard* A 

fiym foree> collected fram the back 

tc^emeatm agaiQ i^pfoached Detroit, 

ia the hope of w^iag off ^lat agnal 

didbonoor which had been there saa- 

taiaed. Cbkmd Proctor* who coai* 

ipaiided the Brttiihy jndged it ioexpe^ 

dieat to deky hi» operat ioM tiH tA* 

whole of the enemj't taoopt coold be 

bnHight forward, Maloag a morona 

forwwd aofemeat^ he^ on the 2^ of 

Jaamuyt attached the American ad^ 

iraiiced^tiard» vnder Genmd Wiochet* 

ttr* amonnttng to upw ards of 1000 

men, which was poetedat FflenchTown, 

on the river Kuam. The Americans, 

though thef foond ia the houses and 

iadosnrea oi the Wikge an advantags 

one de&nsiTe oontioa, were yet unaiEle 

to withstand the lapetnositT of British 

▼akur« They were nat mfy defeated, 

but entieely cot off. AUwhowevenot 

killed or wounded in the action were 

taken p riaeners ; and in this nomber 

WMGraeralWiachesterhimsdi This 

brilliant exploit jdaced the Detroit 

frontier for the preMnt in a state of 

The Amerkaos, in the mean thne^ 
maintained ako a force upon the brandi 
of the 8t I^awreace which conneets 
the Lakes Ontaao and Erie ( and a 
lacge detachment, posted at Ogdcn- 
burah, aarailed itself of the fh>zen stats 
of the river to make incursions on the 
opposite bank. In order to put a stop 
to these impads. Sir Geom Pre^wst 
directed Mi^orMac<kmeU» olthe Gkn^ 

Sry fencihles, te dialog them fm 
fttpost* His mstmcUoBa were eau 
cttted in the moat gallant and sueceai 
ful mannev ^ tbt enemv were drive 
bom their poaalioa, and vrert eaahle> 
<mly by the accidental 'absence of th 
Indian auxiliaries to-effect their escap 
into the woods. This actkm was dii 
tingusshed by the heroic valour of Caf 
tain Jenkins, who, after haviag an an 
shot off, eontiaued still to niah forwar 
and cheer his men to the attack ; an 
even when he had received another ac 
vere wound, did^ not desist tiH eahaw 
tian and loss of blood rendered him us 
aUe to move.— The Aoiericans afte 
this dmck dki aot repeal their u 

As the seaaon advanced, howerei 
fosces accumulated from the dtffierei] 
states,, and thor numbers again becana 
deddedty superior to those of the Bri 
tiski General Dearborn^ in the en 
of April, setsail on Lake Ootariawtt 
5000 men, and baffling the rigilanc 
of die Briti A flotiUa, hmded his £arc( 
in the vic]ait]Fof York, near the head < 
the hdie, bring the place of greate 
importaace in that part of Canad 
General Sheafie, who had not a thw 
sand men, was compdled, after a gpa 
lant reristance^ to evacuate iht plao^ 
and the Americana thus at last wtai 
en afinn fboring on the north bankj 
the St Lawrence.^— About the sad 
thne. General Vincent was obliged, 1 
a still greater superiority of force, j 
abandon Fort St George, which £cfff 
ed the main pokit of drfence on w 
Niagara frontier. To these disaat^ 
was added the Mtare of an attemj 
made by Colonel Baynes to obtt 
possession of Sackett^s Harbour, 
detachment was landed, and the 
were driven widi bts into their bl^ 
houses and batteries ; hut thcae 
found so strongs that it would hd 
been an useless waste of men to atted 
stonaing them. The Britiah fin 
wu tbmfore re-emb«rked* I 

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fBe» Wvcver, Britith indoor i 
kipffise •ODB prodaoed a peactkai. Tbe 
iMUj iMnris^ advsooed beyond Forty 
Ifile Creek to stttck Oewnl Vm- 
OBit, wlio wai posted at Bmingtoiiy 
fkebtttr came apoD tiwni by turprne 
oa tbe oiarbt ctf tbe Ab Jtrae, totally 
defeiledtEeia,aod fi«roed tbeai to re- 
tipevithpvecqNtatioDii Aitbeladiias 
mA tbe aqaadran oader Sir JiaKt Yeo 
led on their rew, the^ were 
to &I1 back apaa Nnganii 
to PMiBtafn IB taeir retreat a 
Kriet of vMucoeMfal actions^ in wbidi 
tbey loet a great f«t of tbeir army, 
wito almoat all tbor artillery and bag- 
i|u;e. TlieBrititbfacceadtaiioedyaiid 
beU^iMBi nearly ra a state of blockade. 
Laadkiga were effected by the Britisb 
m, Sodm» at tbe Genettee rirer, and 
at Plattdbargb ; the stones and pnm* 
mocm at tbete fbices were destroyed or 
carried off. Hopes were now entertaia- 
ed tliat tbe troops oooupyiag Niagara 
■igkt be cut ofi^ «nd oompeDed to 

A cbange of fortune, hoarerer* im- 
aediately tollowed* It began with tbe 
on tbe Detroit frontier^ which 

bad been aaifiMmlr ^ctorions* 
Caiond P^ioctor haTiB|r been doiost 

by tbe solicitations of tbe 
fndiantj and of sone ill-disciplined mi- 
itiiy to make an attempt on tbe fort 
of Sandusky, was fepnlsed with loss. 
Hie troops were disbesntened by this 
wwonted rey e rs e ; and the American 
meial, Harrison, pressing on at tbe 
bead of 10,000 men, forced tbem to 
wtieat in coofbsioQ. The country be- 
ing oa&nrarable to this movement, be 
awertoek, torronnded, and made them 
p s is a atrs $ tbe general, widi a few at- 
tendants, only escaping. 

TUa disafl^ was followed by an- 
adier» still more unexpected and mor- 
tiffiag. Whatever migfat be tbe n^- 
amcal superiority of the Americans 
aabuid, itsaamsdraasoaaibk to cvptiCt 

that on another dement Great Britain 
woidd always mamtain tbe predosm- 
aaaoe. On Lake Erie, however, tbe 
case wa^ reversed. This UMHopidons 
circumstance is said to have been ocea* 
ssoaed by a delay in the transmission of 
a dispatch fram Sir G. Prevost to 
Adaursl Warren, demandmff a reia- 
forcemeat of shipping. The conse- 
quence was, that nioe American ves- 
ads were, on tbe 10th Septead>er, met 
onlybysizBritish* The unequal con- 
test was gallandy maintained : tbe 
Lawrence, the American commander's 
vessd, at one time struck, but die 
British were not able to take posses- 
sion of her ; rdieved by the other 
ships, she again came into action ; and 
the resak wa^ that the British squa- 
dron, after being reduced to a state of 
almost complete wreck, feU entirely 
into tbe bands of tbe enemy. Tbu 
success gave to tbe Americans tbe coo^- 

ete command of Lake Erie ; com- 
ed with the defeat of CoL Proctor, 
it rendered them nmsters of Upner Ca- 
nada. They were sdzed wim that 
excess of exultation, to arbich popular 
governments are liable | tbey already 
considered all Canada as thdr own, 
and publidy announced their intention 
of takmg Montreal, as tbeir winter 

The preparntions by which diese 
magnificent promises were to be sap- 
ported, appeared not altogether inade- 
quate to their fulfilment. Three armies, 
each amounting to neatly 10,000 men, 
■wrched in the end of October, from 
different points, upon Lower Canada. 
WbBe Geoerd Harrison proceeded 
along Lake Erie, Generd Wilkinson 
emMrked bis division upon Lake On- 
tario, and Generd Haippton marched 
to Montred. These troops, however, 
were formidable only in number, and 
possessed no qualities which could en- 
able tbem to stand the shock of troops 
aader British discipline. Hampton's 
wlide corps was arrested for a day by 

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/ 800 Canadian militia; and additional 
forces coming up, he immediately fell 

-backy and evacuated the province. 
Wilkinson succeeded in effecting a 
landing near Kingston. But Lieut.- 

' Colonel Morrison, who was stationed 

< at that place with a small detachment, 
immediately followed him, and an ac- 
tion took place near Chrystler's Farm, 
twenty miles above Cornwall. The 
American army, six timet superior in 

- numbers, was totally routed, with the 
loss of 1000 men. The enemy preci- 

; pitately crossed the St Lawrence, and, 

• abandoning his boats, retreated by a 
difficult country to Plattsburg. 

The disasters of the enemy did not 
atop here. On the 25th December, 

-a British and Indian force having sur- 

. prised Fort Niagara, destroyed or made 
prisoners the whde gamson. The 
British then crossed the river, attack- 
ed General Hull, who had collected 

. about SOOO men on the other side, and 
put him totally to the rout.— -The pre- 
sent year, therefore, terminated m a 
manner as brilliant for the British arms 
as the preceding. 

Thus, amid partial reverses, the cam- 
paign by land was, on the whole, glo- 
rious and fortunate for Great Britain. 
At iea> too, she regained that ascen- 
dancy which naturally belonged to 
her. The first instance in which this 
superiority was established, was at- 
tended with circumstances particularly 
ratifying. . Captain BroJce, of tlie 
Shannon fri|^te, with another small 
vessel atteadmg him, had been cruising 
for some time near the harbour <» 
Boston, where the Chesapeake frigate 

. then lay. The latter, though much 
superior, particulariy in men, did not 
venture to covat out* Captain Broke, 
however, was anxious to nuike a fair 
trial of the valour of the combatants. 
On the Ist of June he dismissed the 
vessel which accompanied him, and, 
with the Shannon alone, drew up be- 
fore the harbour of Boston, in Ji pos- 

ture of defiance. The Chesapeake 
accepted the challenge ; she came out 
to decide, as it were, by single oom- 
bat, this contest between the two na- 
tions in maritime prowess. The coast 
.was entirely lined by the inhabitanU, 
who could observe with ease all the 
vicissitudes of a combat so interesting. 
The isspe renrained not long in sus- 
pense. The two vessels came almost 
immediately in contact, and Captaio 
Broke, observing that the enemy at 
. this critical moment flinched from their 
. ^uns, gave immediate orders for board- 
ing. In less than ten minutes the 
, whole of the British crew were on the 
decks of the Chesapeake* In two 
. minutes more, the enemy, after a des- 
perate but disorderiy resislaBce, was 
driven from every post, and the Ame- 
ricans from the shore beheld the Bri- 
•tish colours flyinfir over the vessel, 
which had just left their harbour in 
full assurance of victory. 

The arrival of Adnural Wamen al 
Bermuda had now esublished the na^ 
val superiorit]r of Britain in these seas ; 
-and the tjuestion was, how the Ame* 
ricans might be best made to feel it ! 
With this view a squadron of Uehl 
vessds was sent up the Chesapeake 
the mnd inlet of the North Ameri 
can States. This squadron made sue 
cessfiil descents at various havens alon j 
its coastSv and upon the rivers at it 
head. Wherever the British landed 
they took possession of the vessels an( 
all public property, without doin| 
any further mjury to the inhabitants 
An attempt upon Carney Island di< 
not succeed ; but Kent and Swan Is 
lands were taken and fortified, and es 
tabhshments were thus formed at th 
-very head of the bay. — Upon th 
whole, considerable injury was done t< 
the en^my by these operations, an< 
.great alarm excited ; but no vita 
point was reached, nor were any o 
the grand otnects of the war material 
ly piomotea.' This desuttory aiy 

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coascing^ warl«ie» tlknigh t fattfoHttf 
wMk the Britt^ public, is never likely 
to lead to any important result. Its 
•occesaea aur superfiknal and tnuMient, 
while, though toe suffering and alam 
wMc^ed may tend in some measore to 
dispose the minds of the pe<^la to 
peaoe» tliis effect must be greatly conn* 
teiacted by the irritation which is ez* 
ciled. No very beneficial e^ct has 
€trr attended its adoption, either on 
tiK old or oew continent. 

Such is a brief sketdi of the railita* 
ry and naval eveata of the year, connect* 
cd with the Aromcan continent, which 
it aeeoKd proper to record without in* 
tenruption. It becomes necessary now 
ao advert to some proceedings which 
took place in England, and in Ameri* 
cay reUtiDg to this unhappy contest. 

On the 14th of May, Lord Damley 
made a motion in the House of Lords, 
for a select conunittee to enquire in- 
to the state of the war vrith Ameri* 
ca, and into the naval administration 
of the country, against which some of 
the accidental triumphs of the Ame« 
rkana had raised a very general out* 
cry. In support of the motion^ it was 
BNUDtained, that ** ministers must have 
been aaare that war could not fiail, at 
■o distant period, to be the result of 
their own measures, combined with 
the hostile feeling of the ruling party 
in the United States. This bemg the 
caae, how were they prepared to meet 
itf With respect to Canada, the 
events which had hi^pened there had 
greatly added to the reputation of 
our arms* But with regard to our 
navad forcey how were we prepared? 
It wpeated, that in the months of 
AprU, May, June, and July last year* 
dwiBg a part of which period there 
BMlttliave been every esqieotiition of 
the Dtfar approach of war, and during 
the latter -part of which the war haa 
actnaUy conuaenced, there were unddr 
Admtial Sawyer^ on the Halifas sta- 
tioD, (exclttsife of smaller vessalsy) 

doe ship cff the linll^ and five bk^g^ 
That so small a force only should 
have been sutiotied there, when a 
timely reinforcement might have a* 
chieved the meet important object^^ 
loudly called for enquiry. If a force 
of five ships of the line, seventeen 
firigates, and an adequate number of 
snuiller vessels, had been on the Ha» 
lifax station at the time the war broke 
out, the whole coast of the United 
States might have been immediately 
blockaded. Had this been done, the 
American frigates in port must have 
remained ther^— those which had sail* 
ed must have been captured in their 
return— -the American commerce would 
have been destroyed«-their customs^ 
upon which they relied for their reve- 
nue, would have failed, and ^th thii 
succession of disasters, the ruling par* 
ty in the United States would hav6 
been forced out of power, and by this 
time v^e should have had peace*. It 
migl^ be said, that the amount of 
the force on the Halifax station was 
equal to that of the American navv» 
and, judging from what had fbrmierly 
occurred, five of our frigates might be 
deemed equal to five c? our enemy's 
frigates ; but was the quality of our 
force in this instance equal to that 
vrith which it had to contend ? Hsid it 
not, on the contrary, long since been 
a matter of notoriety, that the Ame- 
rican frigates were greatly superior to 
ours in size and weight of metal ?-«- 
** War,'' continued the supporters of 
the motion/' was declared against Gteat 
Britain by the United Sutes, on the 
18th of June } the official intel%encp 
of this fact reached government on the 
30th of July, and notwithstanding th^ 
incalculable importance qf this events 
parliament was proro^rued on that yery 
day. War then having beto declared 
on the 18th of June, what was done 
by way of iiistant retaliation I No- 
thing ; and it was not until the ISth 
of October that letters of marque and 

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Mprifld «vere itMed ; how Ak jnterfal 
was enplo7«d the ccwntry fe<pired aa 
•KplanstioiD. StiU, howerer, die tmmt 
dflatory system was piirsiied» and nune 
than two months elapsed before 1^ 
Chesapeake and Delaware wem decb- 
1^ to be blockaded, the potifination 
being 4Med 1^ SSth of Deoeodm. 
AHhoorh imnisters w«ie made ao« 
f^naioited with the ^ualitf of the Ame- 
ncan naval force» they to<A so stefM 
to place our shipphig upon an e^im 
footing, by &^^g them additional 
guns upon deck ; and the vessels upon 
a new coQstractiony that were bnilt 
expressly to cope with the American 
frigates, were not to be launched un- 
til October. In pursuance of the 
feeble and indecisive plan which had 
been observed since the commence? 
meat of hostilities, on the iSth of 
March, 181S, certain other porU of 
the United States were dedared to be 
Uockaded, bat Rhode Island and 
Newport yet remained open, and in At 
tAie latter, the American frigate, after 
Checapture of the Macedcmian, actuali- 
ty refitted. Wat this the mode in 
which the affairs of Great Britain, at 
« "crisis like die present, ^nugrht to be 
conducted ? Every thing wfiii^ bnu 
jvery could accomplish nid been done 
%y the oScers and seamen i our dia- 
«8tm were solely attributable to the 
-ministers. On a refcrenoe to the Loa- 
^n Gazette, it woukl be found that 
-many of Ae circumstaacts attendiof 
^e capture of i^ our fi«gates were s^ 
«iilar ; they were all crippled in their 
^g^g, and dismasted early in the 
action, disasters arisbff partly from the 
-conunanding hei^ of the ships of the 
enemy, and parOy from their greater 
ttreigfat of metal, while the shot from 
our smaller guns produced compani- 
tively little effect upon die masts of 
our antagonists. To ascertain sati^EMi* 
torily the causes of this superiority, 
was surely of ffreatiflMKirtanoe. If it 
^vere urged, that we had not ( 

to man new fij^^atca to eootead witk 
America, it might be replied, that 
Bttny small vessds weve now usdessly^ 
emplofed ufKm various stations, tke 
CKWS of mich maght be turned ov«r 
to<Mir lai*ger vessebt and ma^ tlMM 
be leadesed useful to their country^ 
instead of wasting their years in in* 
glorious idlences. If proper measures 
had been adopted at an early period* 
the enemy's privateers and sh^s of 
war would have been confined vrith* 
in thdr ports, and the list of our cap* 
tnred vessels could not have been 
swelled to the present enormous an4 
melancholy aaMwnt* From the re* 
turns, tt appeared, that S82 of our 
valuable merchaatmen had been eap* 
turedf only 80 of which had been re* 
taken. Tbe chief cause ^f these losaec 
Vfas the deficiency of force on the ira* 
nous sutions at Jsmaica and the Lee* 
wardXsbnds ; for instance, the nation* 
al flag of the British empire had beea 
lately known to wave upon a vessel of 
leu than forty tons burden. While 
ministers were thus negligent of our 
eKtemal conunerce, they were not 
mare vigilant in the protection and 
eapport of our domestic manufacturea. 
American cotton, by a system of po- 
licy that could not be too severely le- 
fflfobated, had, until latelv, been al- 
kwed to be inaqportedy to toe great de- 
triment of our own coloniet» and to 
the great advanti^ of the territoy 
of our enemies. 

** Anodier part of the subject, of 
not less importance than those alreadjr 
noticed, and upeo which detailed en- 

auiries wiere ahaolutely neoessary, wan 
le management of our dock»yards» 
and the genend ayttem pursued with 
regard to the construction of our sU^ 
Several men of war recently built hii4» 
after one voyage, been hid up as unfi^ 
for further service, in consequence of 
the badness of the materials.-WUl 
theae were matters diat demanded ap- 
qiiiryy as «dl indeed aa the ^wkele 

Digitized by 



Mteof the 19mwj B#tid» wUdi 
m pmopaUy aistsagwakcd for m 
Wnte tdk c re nce to #U 9]r»t«iit» 
latopUded in einerj other counbrf 
ifMopo, and Cor m determined op<- 
lidM to all kindt of improve* 

T^ tkfiK diarKet k was aowwegedt 
•AackwMU indeed he a cwcum- 
(tcndiDg to oniatiiate the adaii* 
don of the coiiiitr]r» if» whik 
tkf iNse ^ppriacd that war^was in* 
thrf lisd not kq^ a suffici* 
;on ^e coasts of the Ameri# 
For aoane tioie before the 
dbe covarameat of the United 
i2ead» indicated any thb|^ 
it of fideodship towards thu 
Sodif hofpever^ was not the 
■at aaiaaoa, and k wu at that 
coBilocatly assertedt that them- 
itioa of the orders in cbuncil 
t arfkieDt to fMurify Aaae* 
_thishope we had been dts^ 
~i br, although the pro* 
Kt adnob ans once leited upon as a 
ground for hostilities, had 
awMTf the Amerkaos stiH 
a nuions opjposhion to 
oa the integiky of 
as a nation d^ends* 
the duty of goveinniBnt 
to have been alarays nady-with a fleet 
aHBdeat to hlodude aH she ports of 
^■■rrka^ arooU hardly be laaintaumL 
It vpaa ita dntji no doubt, to keep oa 
Esicaa station at all tiaaes a 
fivice to check ^be aavy «f 
md to protoet the trade of 
r'a subjects. But at was at 
tsflae the duty of govern^ 
twm far as was consistent with the 
mi the coaatry, to iduridfe 
Cosne, and to me all the «• 
■QBsiUie to aaouer branch of 
of whidi the esertioas 
r jof aoch eminent uttpartaDoe* 
It had^eea aaid, diat ships ou^t to 
I taken fraas other qoartevs at 
tof thcwaivaad^i- 


safety at 

pliedto Uk statsens in cpaeatiDn. Bat 
this coald aot be done, unless the force 
oa other stations had been more thaa 
safficient for its objec*, which never 
lud been the case. At Toulon the 
eneaiy had beea ittiag oat dO sh^ of 
the liae ; and in this as well as many 
other pboes the hlockadiag force was 
kss amn the fotne blockaded. The 
season of the year, k asight be also 
observed, at wfaioh the Americanst 
with a view to their oara advantage^ 
bad dedared war, was aoch that all our 
vessak had beea prtimtBly dispatched 
to thek several statbns, whence they 
oauld net be ^aedily recalled. Now« 
uader aH these drcumstancet, had the 
events of the war been such at to war- 
rant enquiry ? It had been said, that 
the force on the American station at 
the commenceacient of the war was in* 
adequate. The Americans did not 
thbk it so ; for, before declaring war, 
their vessels escaped from the Chesa- 
aeake, which was a port Bsble to be 
Uockaded. They did not attempt to 
^At our squadron, but wished to go 
aner the trading vessds ; they went a^ 
ter the Jaaiaica squadron, bttt found h 
sufficiently yarded, and were chased 
by the British ships. They had ne- 
ver dared to attack the British squads 
ron when united, but they took ad^ 
vantage of its di8persioq.-^The Gucr* 
rkre, one of the f rimtes attuded to, 
had but a lew days bmve beea ia com- 
pany widi the other diips, but being 
separated by a gale, was, after an ac- 
tioa of which no one could ^^^ too 
higUy, taken by a vMsd of superior 
force. This might hate happened 
whatever had been the foece of the 
Bikish vessels. It was absurd to talk 
of blockading the American ports. 
What had pMsed within the bat 5H) 
years might have been sufficient to 
dissuade us fram sudi an atteoipt, 
since we had seen, aotwithstaadMig 
the endeavours of our blockading 
s^MulroDS, vesseb tekeu on our «ery 

Digitized by 



coasts. If the goternmeiit had before 
the war sent, as it was now contend- 
ed they ought to have done, a force 
miAcient to blockade the ports of 
Ainerica, while they were doine every 
thing consistent with national honour 
to accommodate the differences be- 
tween this country, how eageriy would 
this circumstance have been laid hold 
•fas the symptomof a hostile tpirit ?— 
Because the crew of the Java had been 
composed in a great degree of young 
Bien, this circumsunce could not be 
oidduced as a proof that there was not 
among them many experienced sea- 
jnen.-— Was it contended, that we 
ahould alter the classes of lAiips in the 
British navy, merely because there 
were three American vessels of unu- 
sual dimensions ? If there was a sub- 
ject on which all naval officers were 
agreed, it was this-^that it was im- 
proper to multiply the classes of ves- 
sels. It was far better to send out 
74's on the station, than to set about 
building ships which would be fit to 
cope only with the American navy. 
As to the advice to diminish the num- 
ber of small vessels, no experienced 
person could adopt it. At this time 
small craft were. in great demand, to 
protect our trade from the privateers 
and other small vessels of the enemy— « 
As to the assertion, that the balance 
•f c^tures since the declaration of 
war was in ftvour of the Americans, 
the fact was directly the reverse. On 
this part of the question a most satis^ 
factory argument might be deduced 
fix>m the rates of insurance. The rate 
for ships convoyed was but one per 
cent, higher than it was a year a^. 
/ The number of this description of ships 
captured had been unusuaUy small, and 
it was not to be wondered at, that of 
those which ran from their convoy 
some should be taken, or that when 
the convoy was dispersed by gales of 
wind, the enemy should sometiflKS 
pick op a few4tr^glers.«^It had been 

made a charge agunst the miaistertf , 
that the letters ofmarque and reprisal 
were not issued till October, slthotigb 
intelligence of the war was received in 
July. But hj this delay, which waa 
allowed to take place vrith the view 
of ascertaining the reception given to 
propositions of amity from the British 
government, no detriment had been 
occasioned ; for so soon as the intel- 
ligence of the declaration of war had 
reached this country, orders were it- 
sued to detain all American vesselst 
thus insuring all the advantages which 
could be obtained by letters <3 marque. 
—As to the military force again, it 
had not indeed conquered the United 
States ; but it was not intended for 
conquest,— -it was intended for the de- 
fence of his majesty's dominions there, 
and this object it had effected.— It 
was not fair to mfer that, because the 
blockade of the American ports wna 
not notified in the London Gazette, 
armed vessels could go out and in 
without danger.— As to the loss of the 
Java, the court-martial which met in 
consequence of that event, would, if it 
had been attended with circumstances 
of neglect of any kind, have rej>orted 
to that effects— In the construction oj 
our vessels we had been represented 
as very deficient, and the public officei 
were said to be so wedded to old cu» 
toms, that no good could erer be ef 
£ected. The truth is, that in the mo 
delling of vessels the French and othe 
nations were superior to us ; but in thi 
execution we were as superior to then 
But in pursuance of a report of th 
conunissioners of revision, aieaaan 
had been taken which would remed 
the defect even in the scientific pari 
To build ships hastily was in ordinsi 
times ruinous, although when the e» 
my made unusual exertions m th 
way, we were obliged, in order 1 
meet them, to follow his exampl 
The decay of some of our ships hfl 
indeed been very rapid ; but » ph 

Digitized by 


CB2kP. 6.] 



for pmrenting it bad been submitted 
to the jadgment of tbose whose duty 
k WM to enquire into the subject. At 
to the OMMt conTenient weight of 
gmsy there were rtrj different opi- 
BKHM among the officers of the navy. 
Some c&cen extolled heavy metal 
wrf mochs while nine out of ten of 
die commanders would rather eo to 
sea without guns of that kind. — Upon 
the whole it was contended that the 
motion was altogether unnecessary.'* 
The motion was accordingly nega- 

On opening the American con- 
gress, Mr Madnon, as usual, present- 
ed a very daborate philippic against 
thb eotmtnr, which contained among 
others the tidUowiog passage : ** The 
British cabinet must be sensible, that 
-with respect to the important ques- 
tioa of impressment, on which the 
war so esseiitiall)r turns, a search for, 
or seizure o^ British persons or pro- 
perty, on board neutral vessds on the 
h^ teas, is not a ielUgereni right f de- 
rived ^rom the law of nations ; and it 
is obvious, that no visit, or aearch, or 
use of force for any purpose, on board 
the vessel of an independent power on 
the Ittgh seas, can in war or pcaoe be 
sanctiooed by the bws or authority of 
another power.'' 

Thus Buonaparte and Mr Madison 
professed the same principles, and pur- 
sned the same object. Both would 
have deprived Great Britain of the 
right ot search, by establishing the 
principle, that free bottoms &>\M 
make free goods^-tlw suoim eitend* 

ing to the persons as well as to the 
property on board. But a nation en- 
^ged in hostilities with another na- 
tion has a right to the support of all 
her subjects, and to take them where- 
ever she can find them. The declara- 
tion of opposite principles, by the A me- 
rican government, precluded of course 
all hopes of an amicable arrangement. 
Yet, although such was the spirit 
displayed by the general government 
of the United States, a considerable 
proportion of the people continued 
hostile to the war. Their burdens 
were incrcasing^-their disasters had 
been severe^— ttie advantages gained 
by their arms comparatively unim- 
portant ; and Mr Madison's partisans 
had some difficulty in managing them. 
To animate their zeal various device 
were resorted to : Among others the 
appointasent of a committee of con- 
gress to report in formal array the al- 
&ged outrages committed by this 
country. £vea this expedient, how* 
ever, fnkd of effect : And the Am^ 
ricans at last applied to the Earaeror 
of Russia to bterfere as a mediator 
betwixt them and Great Britain. Bat 
the British government had wisely de- 
termined never to submit to the j^g* 
ment of any neutn^ power the io^- 
portaat qoestioiM in dispute with A- 
merica; and the mediation of the 
Russian emperor was accordingly de- 
diaed. An offerwasat the MmetipBe 
made to enter into direct negociation 
with America, which, however, led to 
no immediate result ; and the unhappy 
oomest was still protracted. 

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Affhirs of India* General^ View qfAe Reasons for restricting ike Monopefy 
enjoyfid by the East India Company -'^Sketch of the LtmiUiiums under mi^ 
: ike charter wu renemd by Farliameut. 

Tmi fint thisg which nmtt itriiBe 
tiwery ooe who reflects oo the merita 
-of o«r IndiftD policy^ is ^ myste* 
rious style in which most persons are 
•ocastomed to speak upon the sub- 
ject* as ify when examining any qiies- 
tion relating to India* thm existed a 
■ ece s iity for laying aside all the re- 
Jceiired principles of coouaercial and 
politicai sdenee* and fe abandoning 
•even the most fainiiiar maxims of com- 
^tton sense and sound reasoainff. Tbe 
affairs of India, we are told bTthoee 
'who profess to be paiticnlar^ con- 
^pcraaot in them* are qnite diSevent 
^fron the aftdrs of aH other couBtrieSi 
•and must be regulated by a aeparatie 
and distinct set of maxims. Thefe is 
eomething* it is pretended, in the cU- 
mate of Asi»-4o the physical consti- 
tution of the eastern nations, as well 
as in their laws, manners, and religion, 
which must for ever baffle those £n- 
ropean politicians who may presunoe 
to jnteHFere in the lerishiuon of the 
Asiatics. So successful indeed have 
the politiciUns who are supposed to 
have a peculiar and official knowledge 
of India affiurs, been in imposing diis 
singular delusion on the public, that 

even the statesmen, to whom we arc 
accustomed on i^ other subjects to 
listen with respect, are heard with 
distrust, when they come to ddivor 
their sentiments on diecoo^bcated and 
mysterious subject of Indian policy* 

Yet it were absurd to do«bt that in 
Asia as weH as in Europe, that is the 
best system of government whsch moat 
.elFectnally promotes the great ends of 
liberty and protection to its subjects, 
at tiie least poastt>le expense of their 
lives and fortunes ; and that the best 

flan of comaserciai interooarse for 
ndia, as wdi as for England, which 
easares the perfect freedom of iodi- 
viduid iadttstry, vrhile it o&rs the 
most splesidid rewards to the success- 
ful exercioB of individisal talent, and 
the most promising h<»es to the for- 
tunate issue of individual enterprise 
and speculation. It is impossible to 
believe, that there is any tfune either 
in the climate of Asia, or in the con- 
dition of its inhabitants, which should 
prescribe a system of government for 
them materially different in iu princi- 
ples from those which are recognized 
m Europe ; or that an upright and 
[orous administration at justice, a 


Digitized by 





fowtMVB cit ibi i t hm c iit' nr #g feiic g y x^ 
iyvtem of pradmt ttammnj on tbe 
fut mC the adnrnttmioBt wad a fine 
aid QomtmiMd mtenmtnt of tRRfe» 
be of e^nnrocal or dngsrovs 
oein Ifldau 
H ii tcavcdy mcoMiy , tllerefera, 
to nentioiiy wtr notwithftandiiig the 
dmam wlocb his been mted by* tke 
2eal of an intetested factioDy die wbaie 
^amnamm m tm oar Iii4ia» policy mutt 
be bmglit to iiive on tbe imolfticsifl^ 
da» sM a book at tbe Wcaldk of NBk^ 
lion reatty contnos pmciplet wbidi 
do not amflccber lose tbeir mce wbtn 
aopfadoowafcinoflndifc Intpk^ 
Off ait •omliiftry and dedaoation tbe* 
knJ i u g mcHmam of moral and pcAiel* 

applicacioii wbcfwemeD ave Fomd^""^ 
aa amplication, wboat Bnits are ce»* 
fined only by Iboae of bunan sodatyw 
In confoRBit^ with tbe moat wrw 
coo principlaBr it mmt be prooomieed 
»peepoitefoiiitbiDgy that anaeeocia* 
tioA ml meidiante aheald be tetCed 
wilbp tbe aovtmgnty of an empire her 
raoffo nopoloaa and exteno^e than 
that of which diey tbemaelvet^ fona 
bet n tanH and comparatively itmgtB* 
ficaot portion. Tbe canaea, m a great 
aKnaoie accideatal, of thb nngubr 
pbenomcB on in polkksi to which nei^ 
tho- ancient nor modem timet can af- 
Soid any thing Hbe a paraflel, »re well 
known at matter of history. Bun 
whatever dvee cantet may barve been, 
it detervet alwayt to be remembered^ ' 
that the Eait la^ Company^ whieb 
bat no higher rank than what belong 
to the greaiett mercantile teciety m 
tbe worn, it in the actoal postestion 
of one of the hurgett and most fi*rtile 
emmet, and lec^tly claimed the lull 
and onqodlSed aBonopoly of a trade, 
adiieby ettimatiDg iu Tidue by the fer^ 
tiity of the 9oS^ and tbe number of 
tbe pct^de to whom it extends, ou^t 
toleare tbe trade of dl other countriet 
far belaod it in extent and importaace. 

It matt be tnpeipflootn to ume ag aiati 
tuch aa arraagcnKnt the oidiatty to* 
pict ofc cnt m r e - t o dedaim on the ut^ 
ter unfitaett of tooh a society at once) 
to play tbe partt of tovefcign an^ 
mevcbmit— or to dwett at leagtfa on' 
the ttrikiag im p r o pri ety of wading' 
under tbe yoke of such masters, a ter« 
ritortr of annott boandlets extent and 
ferdlicy.— It amtt be equdly supers 
flaont to aieotion that the* ffovem^ 
meat of tbe Company, libe thac e»* 
tablished ia att tbe other orieatal^ 
states, is a pure dtsp ot it m ; aad that 
under soch a goveramrat there eiuttf 
no seeuricy for ikn bi^piness of the- 
gOMi'iied, except m rae aFisdom and' 
beaetolmce of tbe adndnistralioo.— • 
It mast be unntoessary also to state, 
that the interest ia tbe wel&re of In- 
dia, which may be expected from the 
p ro p rie t or s and directors of tbe Com^ 
pany, is reaBy tbe most feeble and 
unsteady that can possibly be imagi- 
ned ; and that of course every thin^ 
might be expected from their aduu*^ 
nistration, rather dian a re^rard to the 
comfort and happiness oT their sub^ 
jcctSt From the very natuie of the 
assoeiatiott, tbe interest of individual 
proprietors most be freUe and tran* 
sient, because their great object in 
coanectinr themselves with the so«' 
ciety at aff, is to secure a certain Aart' 
of influence and patronage ; the exer- 
cise of which, to the fullest extent, it 
not by any means compatible with a ' 
disinterested regard to the prosperity' 
of the governed. It seems quite na- 
tural to expect from such a govern* 
ment nothing but avarice, rapacity, 
and oppression towards its subjects. 
But all tliis is very apparent, and hat 
ah«ady been fluently pressed on the 
consideration ot the legislature and' 
of the country. 

But if the natural, and apparently 
incurable, defects of the Company's 
adtatnistration of the government of a 
great empire be thus apparent, ^ ob- 

Digitized by 



jtelioiit wiikby at fimc viewt present 
tbemadvfs to the commercial monopo- 
Ijy by which the political rights of the 
company were at one time fortified, 
«cai to be infinitely more formidable. 
There is no future, perhaps, of the 
policy of an enlightened age, which is 
more strikingly incompatible with the 
fair enjoyment of iodividual rights, or 
the rapid progress of general prospe- 
rity, than this, system of monopolits, 
and none, certainly, whose absolute in* 
oongmity witj^ tbe notions of an ad«, 
vanoed period is Biore palpable. ^That 
oan be more imjust than tbe selection 
of a few £ivotti^ individuals, for the 
exclusive eojpy«(keni.of aU the.commer* 
dal benefits to be derived from an in* 
tercpurse with distant nations, while 
the rest pf their fi^Uo^^itia^eiis, whose 
pretenMQns are in.evi^ respect as fa-) 
▼ourable, regain :|he idle and discon- 
tented spectators of the advantages se-, 
cured to their mqre fortunate rivals ^ 
It is essential to the prosperity of com- . 
merce, that it should be free and im- 
coastrained ; that the iidventurer should 
be left to the exercise of a discretiop 
the mostunerringy because sppported 
by the steadiest aad most poweml mo* 
tives, and that he slp^uld receive from 
government the most ample protection 
for bis rights, in oi:der that he may be 
enabled to proceed without timidity or 
hesitation. But c^n any invasion of 
his rights be more gross or insulting^ 
than that which is accomplished in the - 
•bape of a moDopoly, excluding him 
from a participation in the profits of a 
lucrative trade, which opens the mpst . 
promising field for his skill and enter- 
prise i Every grant of monopoly is a 
gift out of the great commercial patri- 
mony of the state ; and while it is the 
duty of a wise government, like a kind 
and affectionate parent, to consult the 
welfare of all its snbjects, it is no won- 
der that much murmuring and discon- 
tent should be excited by a capricious 
preference in the distribution of the 

common iahcritance. This ungebenma 
partiality, and uofinr abrid^eat oi 
natural rights ane intplied, lu>wevsr, ia 
^very establishment m commercial nko- . 
nopoly,.and afford, indepeadently of all 
other considerations,, a strong induce- 
ment to the immedtate discontinuance 
of such of them as still triumph over 
the good sense and liberality of the 
present age.i 

These general arguments applied- 
with a fierce which was irresistible to 
the monopoly of the East India Com- 
pany, as It existed before the renewal 
of the charter in the present year. But 
die directors, who could not encoiint- . 
er» endeavoured to elude their force b ▼> 
maintaining, thai, the trade to Bridaa: 
India wouw^fr<»n ciccumstancet which, 
they were not ver^. careful, to explain^ 
admit ^. no exti^nmn from the ntmoat : 
freedom of private enterprise ; that the 
competition of private adventurera 
would, in India, eahance so much the, 
price of every article, that the Cooopa- 
ny would be unable to buy, and ia £u« 
rope reduce the price so much that 
the Company would be rumed by sell* - 
iag ; and that there was something in 
the constitution of the Hindoos wKck 
vrould prevent them from ndsing the 
supply, so as to meet an increas^ de* 
mand for their commodities. Such 
were the stranee arguments by which 
the cause of the Company was sup- 
ported. . 

Even if it could be proved that mo* 
nopolies tend to promote industry and 
opulence, and give a better direction 
to capital than it would take without . 
the aid of law, one might still have 
some scruples as to the equity of the . 
principle, which, for tbe sake of such 
advantages, would authorize s(varbi<- - 
trary a restraint on the common righta 
of society. But it can be established^ - 
that the inexpediency of such a system 
is not more manifest than its injustice. 

It has been often proved, that a trade 
npt supported by the profits which it 

Digitized by 


CaAF. 7.1 



k calculated to yieU, but' rematning 
depeadent for nt' coDtiuaafioe oa ex* 
t i aord inai - y inimimitiet aad privilegaft 
secured at the expence of tfaote who 
do not participate in itt gains, is necet* 
mtf a lodn|^ trade to the p^blicy what- 
ever maj be its result to the individuals 
bf whom it is conducted* No mao 
inipertiit im devotnig a portion of his 
faactt to an employment which docs 
not yield him an ordinary return, with* 
eat amrifttanri* from other sources, or 
the sacrifice of other ad^antager; and 
it may be uasomed, that the same max- 
mu which ian individoal will find pru- 
dent in the inaiiagemeDt of his private 
affiuriy will not prove of do^tfbl ap« 
plication' when apphed to the wealth 
of nations. The trade, therefore, which 
r e quit e s a moaopoly for its support, is 
initaelf a losing tnKie, aad should ne* 
ver receive die couatenance of the le- 
gislatiKe, nidess it be fband subser* 
^jent to higher interests, which could 
not jia any other shape be so effectual* 
ly consulted* 

Where a monopoly of oolooial trader 
such as that of toe East India Com* 
pany, is esublished, it is quite obvious 
that one of two consequences nmst fbl* 
low^ either the monopolists vrill be 
fnUy qualified to conduct the whole 
trade in the very best manner, or they 
irill not be able to do this, and could 
not stand the competition of the pri* 
vate merchant* If the first hypothesis 
be admitted, then the gnmt of exclusive 
privile^ is a very unnecessary mea* 
sore, smce the grantees are, in truth, 
^ very persons into whose hands the 
whole tnule would inevitably fall in 
the natural course of things ; and the 
monopoly can serve no ouier purpose 
than to excite murmnrs among those 
who may be apt to entertain tM erro- 
neous notion, that they themsdfcs 
codd succes^uUy compete with the 
monopolists, were all restraints with^ 
drawn. But this hypothesis is never 
admissible in any case of monopoly ; 

for it is so obviously beyotd the pow« 
er of human foresight and vrlsdom to 
establish pdspective regnlations for" 
the comphcated affairs o? a great and' 
increasing branch^of trade, that theex* 
act adaptation of the sieans to the end> 
will never be credited by anv man' of 
common understanding. Tncre re^ 
mains, therefore, but one ahemative, 
that the mooopofists ave really unfit 
for the beneficial discharge of the trust 
reposed in them— that they are with* 
out the vigilance, capital, and talents, 
which are required to the best ma^ 
nagemcnt of their concerns $ or, in other- 
words, that the affairs of their trade 
are aecessarily and inevitably conduct* 
cd by them to the great loss and w 
convenience of the public 
. Nor is it a matter of any diflEcultv 
to point out the predie way in whkn 
the loss is sustained by the country^ 
which is unhappily led to sanction so 
preposterous an a i ra a ge m ent* The in« 
dustryof the parent state can be promos 
ted only by a demand for its manufiuu' 
tures ; and thiSfdeaMmd can be increa- 
sad in no other way but by competiv 
tion anionp the buyers* The same bh^ 
viotts maxims of political science apply 
also to the case of < the colony, wnoae 
progressive improvement in industry 
and opnlenoe forms the only lavrful ob« 
ject of the policy of the parent state* 
But when you grant a monopoly ydw 
destroy this competition ; you make 
the monopolists the only buyers bothr 
at home and abroad ;. you make them 
idsd the only sellers $ in short, you de« 
stit>y , in so tar as it is possible for a nar-( 
row and misguided policy to do so, all 
the great springs on which the pros- 
perity of nations must for ever depends 
Every man buys as cheap and sdls 
as dear as possible ; but tbe monopo- 
list alone is enabled to do this with ef« 
£ect* There exists no competition to 
restrain the unbounded avarice of his 
nature ; and in the free indulgence of 
the most selfish of pasoons, he is en* 

Digitized by 



aUed whb one buiA to check the i»» 
dttstrf of the poor, aad wkb iW ocker 
to narrow the enjojrneBfet of the rich* 
There i» but one way of pp emo Cw g 
indunrv wkh effect»-»to kicrease dm 
denuMio far ttf productioM | audi thero 
is alio hut otte mmj to cstead oeo* 
SMiptioii-^by lovcnoff the price of the 
artidet coasniBed* Under these tipo 
heads may be tapged iksnnf eiery pro* 
position in the soeaee of y o litlcil eoo^ 
Boavyi as well as evtry latiDoal sehsow 
far acc e l e rati ng the progfcss of op** 
lenoe | and yet it it not a littk sbgi»* 
kr, that the attaianent of both these 
great ends IbraM the tery objectioD 
whidi the £a8t India Coi^pany were 
^eased tostateto the abolitioa of thcit 
commercial monopoly. They oenfe* 
pkined that priiate comnctition would 
enhinrr the price of Indian coannodi* 
ties|*— in other words^thnt it would en^ 
courage bdostry among the subjects of 
the Bbritish g o f ernmen t id India ; aad» 
with perfect consistency^ titty com* 
idnmed also that the same private cam<» 
petition woadd lower, in the hoase 
marketf the take of Indian produce 
ttati^ wooU g>«tlr extend the con* 

what has been abendy stated i^ 
with some limitations^ true of all aKi» 
nopoliea; even of tkose wUck lenve 
scope for the enteromo and vigSance 
of the private tradem of a paifirnlsr 
province or state. Bnt the ar| 
applies with tcnfokl fores t»n mono* 
poly so very narrow an to iaelnde only 
a single conunercial assodadon, so cm^ 
stitnted as to forfeit entirely all the 
benefits derived from the powerful sti* 
SM^tts of pdvate interest, and the 
control of pnvate mspection* floeli 
an asaodadon as this^ while it de- 
prives industry of all the advantages 
derived from a free compedtiooy and 
sacrifices the interestaof the comm«» 
nity to the jprcgudioeaoff afowindsii^ 
duals, is so mgeniously contiived as to 
ibffoit^ even for tbe grantee% aS the 

c omrtitffrinl benefits which they miglBt 
otherwise ptonnse themsdvesmna tkn 
partklityof fDvemmenft. The strong 
stiarabtt of individual interest, and the 
benefits of private d^pbmeei being lone 
by the very conatitution of the aodetyt 
toe in&rence is no less inevitd>le to 
^eory, than we have found it in win*> 
Uy justified by the event, ^at anok 
an assodataoo, with att its pri vii cggo 
and immnnities^ could not for a sing^ 
day sustain die competition of the nvi* 
vote oaerchant i nay, that even whma 
secured against this competition, suck 
ase the negliMice and wasu insspanu 
Ue from iSs pte of adnnnistrBtion, tfant 
it cinnaty vrith any rational ^oospeot 
of success^ hope to continne its coni^ 
meiTisl undertaknga. 

Bnt there vras mil another drcn^ 
stance connected vrith the state of the 
East India Goinpa n y since its immen s e 
tetritorid acqunitions had' been i 
in India, Imt which it was nsost 
imnaUy mstii^pashed from 
every other monopoly, and aspired te 
a nr&«Bunenoe over every other in^K>* 
Utio estdilisbment, viz. the combm^ 
don of the incompatiUe f uncdons of 
merchant andsoveteign, which nrast for 
ever prednde advances in comaaeidal 
improvement. If the soreieign of any 
Emxmean state had an entire aaei- 
ncqmly of its fbeeign trade» what aie 
the eoosequenoes vrUch ewry aaanof 
rnssmnn nnderssandbg wonld andci» 
pans from so ptcDosterous an: union n£ 
d iBucnt , or lauier oppodte chara^ 
tera? Would he not expect, with the 
BMst perfect confidenoey either that the 
tnde would be rendered quite sd>setw 
vient to the fluctuating s^emesof sA^ 
ministratioo, and of couise would sink 
fdcUy into indgnificance, or that the 
pntei'ttd interestf which n natonl even 
te the worst of govemamnts, in the 
prosperity of iu subicots^ vrouU be 
shamdesdy sbandoned for the pmmitB 
of unhmrfiu gain, nt thehanard of eoaa- 
mitdnff the ffrentastoonesaiaesin dw 

Digitized by 


CffAV* 7,} 



Sodiittrioaaclaiaet of the people ? The 
ctte wa» precisely the same with India: 
the.Cofnpanjr, at tovereigst^ ought to 
iiaie £dt ao iotefett in extending the 
mannfarmret and trade of India » but* 
aa moDopolistH it vas clearly their butw 
ana to conopress them within the nar- 
row Uouta which were found suitable 
to their own drcumstances and re- 

The accuracT of these general views 
baa been wdl iUuatrated in the history 
of this great establishoieut. In the 
year 178i^ the attention of the legisla- 
pXK and the country was imperiously 
^alkd to lodiaB afiairs, by the profile 
facy and misflMoagement which seem* 
ed to aaark the whole of theCompan j's 
nroceedings* It had at this period 
become notorious, that the oppression 
exjerdsed by the Company'a sanraots 
abroad over the independent princes of 
India^-'^princes in alliance with the 
PompanFr-His veil aa over the provin- 
ces wiuck had submitted to the Aiitish 
goTemment^— were such as to endaa* 
per the verr existence of the British 
^ India* So very critical and alarm- 
ipg was the state of Bntish India 
ijbta deemed by the kgislaturet that 
afier daborate apd voluminoua reporta 
by committees of the House of Com- 
mooa* in which every species of mis« 
nmermaent waa brought hoQ^ ^o the 
UMnpanyt the most violent remediea 
alone were oxonounced suitable to tho 
diseaae, Mr Fok and his iFriends did 
■ot hcwtate about proposing a roeasuwa 
wUcb involved the Uanporary. forfei- 
ture of tlie most valuable privileges 
hikoag^ktt to the Company } while Mr 
Pitt, with less pvecipitatifany and more 
tcadcraesa lor the Company's rights 
rgwiH discover no cure for the disorder 
sliort of a participation by the exeou* 
tsve government in the conduct of the 
Cossftpaay's political affsirs* 

I>ariag the anxious discuaupns of 
tbat nemoraUe period* i^seeass tohave 
b^cn conofded oa all sidaib ^t there 

▼Oi. VI. PABT I. 

were vices inherent to the very consti- 
tution of the Company, which disqua- 
lified it for the exercise of the func- 
tions with which it was entrusted; 
that the greater number of the pro- 
prietors must always be much more 
disposed to intrigue for political influ- 
ence, than to speculate tor the Ukt of 
commercial ffealth ; and that the court 
of directors, being a representative 
body, must of necessity be supposed 
to participate in the vices and preju- 
dices of their constituents. It was but 
too obvious, from the whole scene of 
iniquitv which was unveiled, that the 
more bustling and ambitious of the 
proprietors were naturally so much 
interested in the welfare of the Com- 
pany's servants in India, who were of 
their own selection, as to aim at secu- 
ring certain impunity for all classes of 
debnouents ; and it was at once per* 
ceived, that the irregular and pnde« 
fined coatroul then exerted by mini- 
sters over the proceedings of the di* 
rectors, must for ever be found inade- 
quate to the remedy of such grievan- 
ces. It availed not the Company to 
pretend, that the instructions di^atch* 
fd by them to their servants in India 
hl^l in general been wise and politic, 
because it had been remarked with 
astonishment, that every breach of these 
instructions had been ultimately re* 
vrarded with the Company's approba- 
tion. Of the disposition natural to a 
set of men like the proprietors of India 
^ock, a very good specimen was a^ 
this tio^ given, in the confirmation of 
the power of Mr Hastings, after his 
recal had been determined upon by the 
House of Commons i and, la short, it 
wjas, in the whole circumstances of the 
case, quite manifest, that no remedy 
could be found for the defects iDhereot 
to the constitution of the Company, 
but in the exercise of a powerful ^nd 
efficient controul over the selectioa of 
their servants, as weU as their plans of 
policy. A most important revoluiigu 
* I t 

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in the gorernxnent of Britbh India 
of course determined on* and a great 
share of that power which the Com* 
pany had shewn itself so HI qualified to 
exercise, was transferred to the crown, 
which was thus enabled to controul the 
proceedings of the directors, hr the 
power of appointing to offices of trust 
in India,— of imposing a negative on 
the appointments made by the Com- 
pany, and of removing improper aad un- 
worthy servants from the situations t6 
which they had been nominated. A 
direct influence over the policy pur- 
sued in India was bestowed on a hody 
of commissioners, created for the pur- 
pose, who have since been known un- 
der the appellation of the Board of 
Controul. Tlius did the Compan^s 
acknowledged incapacity to manage its 
affadrs prescribe a change of system to 
the legislature, which anraunted to a 
direct and serious encroachment on the 
rights then claimed, even under an ex- 
ist mg charter, which had received the 
sanction of paffUament.' 

By fsLT the niotX solid and impor- 
tant of the advantages which EngUnd 
may derive from her vast empire in 
India, is that of a great and extended 
commercial intercourse with the im- 
mense regrions included in the Com- 
pany's charter. The splendid acqui- 
sition of extended empire is but of 
doubtful advantage— Uie surplus of 
revenue after defraying the etpences 
of local government is but precarioua 
and uncertain at the best, whnethe law- 
ful gains of an honourable commerce 
form an important and substantial ad- 
dition to the power and resources of 
the parent state. Few persons would 
have been disposed to challenge the 
Company's administration,- even if it 
had secured for the mother country 
no advantages except those which are 
of the most unequivocal character, by 
the increase of her manufacturing in- 
dustry and the extension of her com- 
merce. Had the Company done this 

to any extent worth' mentioiiing— had 
it fulfilled the expectations even of 
those who estimate on the most mo- 
derate prmciples the commercial value, 
to such a country as Great Britain, of 
the exclusive influence which it had, by 
a series of fortunate events, been ena- 
bled to acquire aaK>ng the nations of 
Asia— or had it not rather kejpt down 
the enterpriseVnd baffled the hopes of 
the British people ? Every one knows 
what answer must be given to these 

But had the Cmtipan^*a transac- 
tions been profitable to itself? It is 
true, indeed, that so long as the ma- 
nufactures of India found no rival in 
those of Great Britain— vrhSe the 
Company was in the undisturbed en- 
jojrment of all its exclusive privileges, 
with the advantage of a ready mar- 
ket, to which no competitor could 
venture on approaching— and while 
there yet remamed some funt traces 
of the mercantile ori^n of the csta- 
bitshment, in the habits of vieilance 
and* economy which correspond with 
that character*— they did contrive to 
make a profit on their mercantile ad* 
ventures, although even then the pro* 
fit was as narrow as a very careless ma«, 
nagement of their affairs would permit. 
But of late years the scene had heetll 
qvatt changed— the admission of Ame J 
nca, in the year 17979 to thy share h? 
the trade both of India ind Chinai; 
which was denied to the British mer J 
chant, appeared to have altered entirely! 
theformof theConfipany's commercial 
concerns^ and since that fatal year thej 
general balance on their mercantile] 
transactions had, with hardly a single] 
exception, been against the Company, 
The year 1797 was the first m which 
a total loss on the mercantile tranaac**' 
tions of the Company was fairly adJ 
mitted. In 1796 the same discoursing^ 
result vras presented ; m 1799 there was 
a great loss on the exports to India ;^ 
and in ISOO aserious loss wa^ igaid s us«^ 

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taaed on tlie etptfrts to India, for 
•lucli no coiilpeflkst^n coi^ be found 
b the sales iii Europe. From 1801 
dowBwmrdSy ttie accounts present no- 
tUiii^ but a repetition of toe saa^e dts* 
asfccrt io Indn— of henry losses sus- 
tained on the Cottpany's ekportt Ifoni 
Gteat Britain, which aie ^aitdy ever 
cow p en aated by the profits on theif 
nporta. The trade of the Con^pany 
iofT the last fifteen years has therefore 
tASbi^ed nothing but a series of very 
hea:vy losses, as ^i^U as tafious other 
tynptoois of deeay^ from which there 
aeeaBcd to be no chance of rescuing 
the coaamerdal intercourse 'betwixt 
Gt«at Britain and Indmso long as the 
ijatem of etdusbo was pursUM* 

Whefi the great question as to the 
fcoesni of the Company'i charter was 
wider ^scttsilon, the private mer^ 
cbaafts had dnms to a participatioil 
la the trade exclusively enjoyed by 
die Company-j^hntlsi to a free trade 
hoth with India and China, tocher 
with such a right of residence m the 
territorial postessiond of the Com- 
pany, as migfat be found neceMary fdt 
caabliBg them to manage their corf- 
tents, me of arbitrary conditions and 
RKraiDti of evert description.^ 

Agaioat this demand the Company 
alleged the nstdral and necessary \U 
viCatoQto of the trad^ to India, and 
fiaril tUa^hey inferred the expediency 
•F ooodnding the nionopoiy; But 
eatn if the public had bc^n satisfied 
ttat there was no chance of an increase 
•( the traded there i^otdd stdl have 
Isea greart {iropriety in acceding to 
the deamids of the petitioners. Whe- 
^er the trade Should^ after it was 
AwNm <ypeii, prdve susceptible of 
great improvement in point of extent, 
this at least was certain, that it might 
admit of much aflielioratidn in t!^ nme 
«f attoagensent— and this seemed quite 
asufficsent reason for acceding ^to the 
pmpositkms of the merchants* But 
tbe esBtitneots of the Company on this 

head were InUe to the strongest suspi- 
cions. Their oWn fiulUre, in extettdin| 
the trade to India and China, afforded 
tio proof whatever that the trade was 
not susceptible of improvement— «id 
e%en the sc^anty introduction of Bri- 
tish manu&ctures which had aheady 
been effected ansong the peOpk of 
Asia, afforded etidence that under 
better maweoient tbt trade might 
admit of in^finite increase. It was 
obvious^ kt all etenf s, that things cOidd 
not be i^ts^ than they were, but 
that they might bcfcome much better ; 
and this consideration seethed suficient 
of itsdf to jntify and eveh to pre- 
scribe a change ot sy^teih. 

It could ndt eicape observation, that 
the apparent contempt with which the 
trade of India was spoken of, and the 
instant ruin vrith wmch private adven« 
tures^ werethteateried, firere not quite 
Consistent with the serious remon- 
strances of the Company against the 
removd of the restrictions. If the 
trade were really so narrow and un- 
prosperous as they l^ould have had the 
ptibfic to belieie, the surtender of their 
excliisi^ right to it could not be 
so very senous ; and if it were to 
be fraught with ruin to those who 
might dare to embark in it, the Com- 
paiiy niight hitVe ^ely left it to the 
mteiligenci^ of the private trader to 
have made ihe discovery, and to his 
pnidence to retihf from utter destruc- 
tion, shoiild his sanguine hopes seduce 
IM into a perilous undertaking. In 
shdrt, the rtittiie extent of the trade 
to India could never be estimated by 
iny calculatidns of its amount while 
under the management of the Com- 
pany^ nor could the warm remon- 
strances of the directors against the 
admission of private adventurers be 
^eidilr asoribed t6 their disinterested 
apprehensions about the safety of tiiieir 

' But the most decisive and ntisfac^ 
tory awviraneeon this branch of tb^ 

Digitized by 


isa EDINBURGH ANNUAL REGISfTER, 1815. [Ciuf. 7. 

subject WM derived from the vast pro* 
gnu which Aaierica had unaccount- 
ablf been pemiited to make in the 
tnde of ladia. In a tirade which 
ihould have admitted of bo increase 
from private interference> the me rcaa^ 
tOe advefittfrefs of America had been 
allowed to participate so largely, that 
they had the sttp|My» npt on^ of their 
Mm «uHrlie|» as well as that of South 
Amerfca^ but had actually competedi 
tfit S9od purpose^ with the Company 
stadft in the general market of Eu- 
rope* These facts, which were quite 
ootoFKOUSi threvf considerable suspi- 
cions on the prophecies, which, in the 
abolition of a baneful system of ex- 
dnsibn,, ibreboded the ruin of an ex- 
tensive trade,, aud the subversion of 
an empire. 

It was maintained by the Company, 
xhat the capital of the private mer- 
chant^ WQvId be found inadequate to 
Xhe proper encouragement of the trade 
with India,- because the native manu- 
facturers are so poor that large ad- 
,vancea must be made to them long 
Jbffbxe the fruits of their labour can 
.b^ realixed* But those who urged 
this absucd plea forgot, that the con- 
cerns of an pctensive commerce natu* 
rally give rise to many subdivisions 
in the employment of capital, and that 
while witn the benefits of a free trade, 
the capital of one class of merchants 
might be devoted to the purcliase in 
Inra^ and the transmission to Europe 
of Indian maauiactures, that of ano- 
.ther class would naturally seek em- 
ployment in furnishing for the native 
' workmen the means of enabling them 
to prepare and bring forward their 

It was alledged besides for the Com- 
pany, that the Hindoos, and indeed 
the whole people of Asia, are of a 
very timorous and suspecting charac- 
ter-*that they are very unwilling to 
hold anv intercourse with strangers— 
that a long experience of the Com- 

paay's transactions had however ia* 
spired universal confidence in their ho* 
nour and good faith, but that the pri- 
vate merchants would find the difficul- 
ties of trade with the whole race quite 
insurmountable. It was ^en nsai«* 
tained, that the prof^ress made m the 
introduction of British manufactutva 
into China, had been the result of the 
talents and address displayed by the 
agents and supercargoes of the honour- 
able Company, who had dextetoufilf 
resorted to artifices of various kinds* 
for the purpose of seducing the Cbs- 
qese into a tast/e for these produc- 
tions, whose value they would pevar 
otherwise hav^been ph\t to appr^datew 
But these pnetencea were too flioasy to 
require a moment's^^ consideration. 

It is well known that the trade 
betwixt Europe and India was couo 
tempbted with much iealousy and ap- 
prehension by the advocatea off thf 
commercial system, as it was C9lle4 
whose tenets are not yet entirely 
ahandoned. The constant exportatioa 
of bullian tti return for oommoditiei^ 
was calculated to alarni those p^rsooft 
who considered the increase of the 
precious metals as comprehending 
every thing which it was the object 
of a wise policy to accumulate, and 
who pretended to discover, in tlie con- 
stant drain of these objects of food 
attachment, the downfall of the com- 
mercial prosperity of the European 
states. It was to be expected, that 
the defenders of monopoly, to whom 
every part of the same comnuircial 
avstem is naturally so dear, would avail 
toemselves of the popular prejudices 
on this subject, and endeavour to raise 
an alarm about the ruin which must in 
this way ensue, from the extension of 
our commercial intercourse with Ib« 
dia. It can hardly be worth while to 
expose so pitiful a prejudice; but if 
the aigument applied in favour of the 
Company, it struck with equal force 
against it. If it would be dangeront 

Digitized by 





to exunid the trade to Itidit> for fettr 
«f totiDg all the ^old and Ater which 
wc can collect* it muit be impdfitic 
to cootiDtie any trade trfth it at tSif 
and the Company ought iirttanttyi and 
far ever, to have abandoned all its 
commercial undertakings. 

It waa stated with great confidences 
flat the private merchants would be 
noble to condoct their trade in India 
withoat the assistance of a miUtarr 
Sorce at the various factories^ which 
tbev might £nd it convenient to esta* 
bbn ; because* forsooth* it is impos- 
aUe to conduct trade of any kind in 
India but at the point of the bayonet. 
Tbe eKperience which suggested this 
Mce of reasoning did not seem very. 
moonUe to the conmiercial charac* 
ter of tlM East India Company. 

The dan||era of c<^nization were 
ittAiriy insmted upon by those who 
wiihd to perpetuate the monopoly. 
From colonisation was anticipated the 
introdactbn of the European spirit ; 
the discnssion of popular rights ; and* 
fisally* die subversion of the local go- 
wrament. A.11 the weaker passions 
were set in motion ; all the most ab- 
Mtd prejudices were alarmed on this 
branch of the aubject. 

But if there be any country in the 
worid to whicb there is but little chance 
of a considerable emigration from Great 
Britaia, that country is India ; and 
mry person of common understand- 
iag most be ineritably led to this con- 
cision by a variety of considerations. 
Fim of all* India contains a popula* 
tioB which may fairly be consioered a^ 
bating for a period, beyond vrhich we 
ba«e no record, been absolutely redun- 
ibat* aady of course* must for ever con- 
tiooe to afford the most slender temp* 
titions toemigraats of all dasses. What 
could induce the kborious population 
of £nglaiid to select India as a place 
of enC* where there is no room either 
fer thetr skill or industry f 8dlv*The 
Woral cooaequfnoe of an overflowing 

population is quite perceptible in die 
very insigraficant vwue whieh Itbour 
bears in that country* compared with 
the price which it will brmg in the 
market of Europe x and this circum* 
stance must fdr ever remain a complete 
bar to the emigration of the lower or- 
ders* that is* to an emigration of any 
importance. 3dly* The cfimate* lan- 
guage* Uws* religion* and manners* 
of the Hindoos* are as utterly imlike 
those of the people of this country as 
it is possible to conceive ; and this again 
must add prodigious strength to the 
barrier by which the inhabitants of die 
two countries must remain separated. 
4thly* The immense distance of India 
from England* and the conseouent ex- 
pense of emigration* would efiectuany 
prevent the bwer orders from emigra- 
ting to India* even if no other obstacle 
opposed itself to such a project. 5thly9 
Without large and constant emigra- 
tions of the lower orders* on whose 
co-operation their more active and tur- 
bulent leaders must ever depend for 
the success of their projects* it is ex- 
tremely improbable ttiat there should 
be numerous emigrations ^ven of the 
htter chss* whose removal to India 
was the object of affected dread. 6thly* 
But even on the supposition that sdl 
the preceding views were erroneous* 
and that emigration were^duaHy and 
dowly to take place* an indefinite pe- 
riod nmst elapse before the European 
settlers could bear an assignable pro- 
portion to the natives* over whom it 
was assumed that they were speedily 
to exercise a degree of influence* which* 
in spite 6( all the respect naturdly paid 
to government* and in defiance of all 
the power -which that government 
could employ for repressing it, was* 
with rapid progress* to drive the na- 
tives into a state of insubordination 
9nd rebellion. 

An obstinate* and unfortunately a 
successful* resistance was made to the 
c^>enmg of the China trade. The old 

Digitized by 


IM EDINBURGH ANNjLJA^ &EGI&TE|^f 1813. [Crap* 7. 

story was. repeated about the impro- 
dence of pritate traders^ who were» of 
course^ to exasperate the Chinese* a 
tingidar and irritable r^ of men. But 
it was justly remarked^ that tf we were 
actually to be eacluded from the ports 
of China^ we should not be deftfived 
of an intercourse vr\fh that country so 
long as we have numerous statioo8»- 
whither the Chinese would most wil- 
lingly repair to carry on their trade 
with us. The Americans never insult- 
ed and exasperated the Chroese so as 
to forfeit the )>coefits of the China 
trade $ and the private traders of Ame- 
rica carried on their trade to f hina to 
such purpose* that they were enable4 
to sell their teas at Boston and New 
York for less thap one-naif of the prices 
charged by the compuiy to the people 
of Enffland* 

Such were the viewswhich were ge- 
nerally taken of the commercial branch 
of this great question | and* it may be 
added* that these views, to a ffreat ex- 
tent* received the sanction ofgovem- 
ment* It will now be proper to give 
some aecoimt of the measures adopted 
by parliament* and oC the more imoor- 
tant limitations under which the cnar- 
ter of the Company was renewed. 

The resolutions respecting the re* 
newal of the East Ii^dia Company's 
charter, originally proposed by Lord 
Clstlereaffh, were, after long e|camina- 
tion and discussion, ultimately agreed 
to, with little alteration. The plai) 
thus adopted continued to the cono- 
pany the sovereignty of (ndi^ The 
influence of the crovni, in regard to the 
nomination of governors-general* re- 
ceived an increase* though it may be 
doubted jf full provision be yet made 
to obviate the embarrassment arising 
from the exercise of so high a function* 
But if, in regard to pohtical power* 
the Company obtained neariy adl that 
they could demand, the sanoe favour 
was not shewn to their pretensions still 
to monopolise the commerce of India 

The tit^*'h9wevert fm cptoti «p 
oompetitioo onjy in those branches 
^rom which the Company always de- 
dare^ that no profit, but a sennhfe 
loss,accrue4totfiem. These branches* 
^refore, they had np motive to cany 
on, other than that of |>ublic spirit* 
and their financial condition ougnt to 
be improved by the transference of them 
to other hands. The trade to China* 
by whiph the Company still gained 
considerably, yf^ preserved to Sktm. ' 
The consideration of this affair oc- 
cupied a grct^ portion of the time 
^d attention of parliament* than any 
other subject which was agitatiHl du- 
ring the present session. A great par( 
of tha^ labour was very idly employed* examinations took place to aa- 
certam whether the situation and ac- 
co^k^nodation c^ ^ o|it-ports would 
^dmit of In^ia goods being im^ported 
into them with perfect security to tb« 
revenue* The most decided protest 
ought to have be^n otfetfd against en- 
termg into any such enquiry. It is u 
most alaitn^ing circumstance* that tht 
principle should at all be admitted of 
subjecting commerce to restraiat and 
jnonopoly for the purpose of render- 
ing it more easy to collect tbe taxea^ 
Ifwe begin on such principle^ where 
are we to stop i If India goods are to 
be confined to particular ports, why 
are not wines and sugar to be confined 
for the same reason ? There is no doubt» 
that if all articles subVect to taxation 
were to be introduced at one single 
port only, the revenue upon them would 
be coUected much more easily* more 
eftcacioudy, and more cheaply ; nor 
would any bad consequence follow* 
except the rapid decay of all these 
branches of trade. There is, in fact» 
much less pretence for such a measure 
in the case of India than of almost any 
other goods. The length of the voy- 
age, and the tempestuous seas through 
which it is made, render necessary the 
eaDi{)loyment of very large vessels^^uch 

Digitized by 


C«AP* 7.3 




hrger tlum are reqniisite for carryine 00 
the European or Americaa tradie. The 
large size of vessels materially obstructs 
any iilidt traffic, because such vessels 
cannot approach sufficiently near to the 
the coast for such traffic, and because 
their motions are much more easily ob> 
served. Besides, as tea was already ex- 
ceptedy none of the other articles afford 
a revenue so considerable as that any 
foch violent measures should be neces- 
sary to prevent a small defalcation. 
Better wpuld it be if any tn£ing loss 
is tnstained, to compensate it by an in- 
creased duty on the same, or on any 
other articles, than thus to cramp the 
sinews of national industry. Why 
^ should piece-goods be introduced only 
^into the port of London ? and why 
should the rest of the trade be confined 
to certain of the out*ports ? these, too, 
to be Exed by an arbitrary decision of 
tbe privy council. — The nature of the 
trade secured the employment of large 
vessels ; the regulation, then, which re- 
quires them to be S50 tons is superflu- 
oiit,auid may become oppressive. Why, 
in short, wnen the East India trade is 
iesa exposed to smuggline than any 
other, should it be nuide uable to re« 
strictions, from which every other is 
exempted ? Since it was determined 
that the trade should be laid open, 
there WM furdy no reason why it should 
not be ^aced on the very same footing 
with alf other trades* 

In the course of these debates, a new 
and important proposal vras made — 
that the Company snould not only be 
deprived of the exclusive trade to their 
Indian territories, but that they should 
be pn^ibited from carrying on any 
trade whatever. If it be an obvious 
principle, it was remarked, that com* 
* nerce ought to be free, it is no less 
certain that it can never, with any ad* 
vantage, be carried on by a sovereign. 
Sovereigns, however, have not always 
been sensible of diis truth ; and it may 
often be necessary for an enlightened 

leghlatuffe to interfere, in order to pre- 
vent them from acting in opposition to 
it. Should the executive goverament 
of this country think proper to employ 
any part of the public funds for com- 
mercial purposes, it would be the in- 
dispensable duty of parliament to in. 
terfere, and put a stop to any such chi- 
merical speculation. The same course 
may, with equal propriety, be held to- 
wards a company, the sovereign of an 
empire, far more extensive than that of 
the British islands. It is impossible 
that the Company should suffer by such 
a prohibition. Since the trade was a 
losing one to them when they enjoyed 
the monopoly of it, what must it be 
when they have to maint^n it against 
the active and watchful competition of 
private interest ? 

» Much as the attention of the pubHc 
was attracted by the political and com- 
mercial arrangrements, an interest no 
less deep was excited by the ecclesias- 
tical regulations which were adopted 
for British India. The present age is 
remarkably distinguished by the ex- 
traordinary concern felt for the case of 
those nations who have not yet recei- 
ved the light of the gospel. It is of 
high importance to give this propen* 
sity a just direction, and to restrain its 
exuberance. The measures which were 
adopted on the present occasion, may 
be considered in two lights,~-as they 
furnished a prorision for religious wor- 
ship to the rluropean residents in In> 
dia, and as they had in view the con- 
version of the natives. 

It was now proposed, for the 6rst 
time, to found an ecclesiastical esta- 
blishment for British subjects resident 
in India. There can scarcely be a doubt 
as to tlie high expediency of such a 
measure. It nas universally been con- 
sidered as a dutv of govemnaent to pro- 
vide gratuitously for its subjects some 
kind of religious instruction, and to 
give to the establishments for that pur- 
pose the lustre and support which they 

Digitized by 


156 EDINBURGH ANKUAL JfcfeOlSTiR, 181S. [Chap. 7, 

may denve from the sanction of public 
iiuthority. No reason appears whj this 
common privilege should be denied to 
a class of men now become so numer- 
OU89 and who must often stand in need 
both of instruction and consolation. 
Care is doubtless to be taken not to ex- 
cite jealousy or irritation in the natives ; 
but provided they are left to follow 
their own religious observances with- 
out molestation, it were too much tp 
expect that the British should not also 
exercise the same privilege. But the 
natives of India are, as is well kaowui 
scrupulously observant of all the cere- 
monies of their own religion. They do 
not expect or wish that this religion 
should be ours ; they consider it as an 
inheritance of their own j the diflference 
awakens no enmity or disappointment. 
"V et they are struck with horror when 
they see the British observing no forms 
whatever J living the life or absolute 
atheists, which is that led by almost 
all the military, and by many of the 
civil renrants of the crown. It will 
raise us in their estimation when they 
see us observing some form of religion, 
even though it were one much less 
pure than that which vnll actually be 

Government, however, had not this 
object alone to attend to. They had 
also to consider how they should act 
in reference to that ardent ze^l with 
which numerous bodies of Christians 
in this country are animated, to com- 
municate to the Indian world the bless- 
ings of revelation. Thus a question 
arose, which the drcumstances of In- 
dia, and the character of its mhabitants, 
rendered one of peculiar delicacy, and 
which, therefore, merited an attentive 

To preach the gospel to the heathen 
-world cannot be considered as a duty 
binding upon Christians at aU times, 
and in aU circumstances. The same 
power which at first bestowed Chris- 
tianity on the world, now withholds 

that blesting from a Urge pMtioa ttt 
the human race ; and since that power 
does it, it is done certainly for wiie 
purposes. Instructions to preed^ the 
gospel are, in scripture, given only to 
the chosen instruments x no such ex* 
hortations are addressed to Christian! 
in general. On the other hand, there 
can be no doubt that Providence, to ac^ 
complish its beneficent purposes,makea 
use of human means ^ and when a fair 
opportunity presents itself of spread* 
ing the light of Christianity, it is lau- 
dable, and even incumbent, on Chris^ 
tians to avail themselves oif it. The 
question is, whether the present state 
of i ndia can be considered as affordiing 
such an opportunity i 

There is a wide difference between 
the preaching of the apostles, and t\mt 
of those who now attempt by the same 
means to effect the conversion of the 
heathen world The former, endowed 
by Heaven with supernatural powers, 
could present to every unbiassed mind 
an incontestable proof of the authority 
under which they acted ; but the mo- 
dem missionary, who ^oes into a re* 
mote country, with omy hh solitary 
voice to raise in behalf of the doctrine 
which he teaches, has no means of pro- 
ducing a rational conviction. He can 
work no miracles himself; and he can-* 
not carry along with him that chain of 
histoncsu evidence, by which vfe are as- 
sured that miracles were once wrought* 
From these considerations, reasonable 
and sober-minded men are seldom dit* 
posed toen^ge in such undertakings t 
not to mention that diey are generally 
attached to a more regular and esta- 
blished life. Hence it is only by the 
emissaries of fanatical sects that con* 
versions have been made. The Jesuits, 
of all missionaries the most suetessful, 
obtained their end partly by the pomp 
of their worship, and partly by pre- 
tending to the power of working mi- 
racles, which they never scrupled to 
claim. Among protcstants, the Bap- 

Digitized by 


COAP. 7.3 



I MoMrfantliitebdEra tkekid 
■I tike piotts work of coofefdiiff tlie 
totlieu I few of the «obeier cfitiet, 
nen of ^Isieiitert, Iwfc thouglit of 
kfeerferiog. The effisctt prmliiced 
by exertiotn of thk desctt|Kloa haw 
iddom been gietti they have ne^. 
ver been duraSle. Of the %voBderfiil 
bbovra of the Jetoita acaroely does a 
vcaij^e noiHT lemaiu 1 they have betfi 
drivco froift Oni&ay ftoiii Japan^ froin 
aH the kingdoiiie of the £asu The 
moBMt fiate has attended them among 
the ntfvttrea of America, with the ez- 
ceptkm of the railsiooa of iVvagoay, 
urUdi ft'e (Mreaerred merely hecane a 
^edea of ettpirek of wUdi thcjr were 
tbe aovcMgnat had hees ettahhihed 
intlMtiegion. 8ochamodeofcon?er- 
mntf bon^rer, coold not he admitted 
SAthe preaeiitinttaftee;aadlittkgood 
cut tbercfore be expected from nus- 
' Breai^aig. The rdigkm of 
nrmlT rooted in die nabiti, 
and o be er van cet of the peopk, 
wfaieh haa resisted every change 
for thoosaads of years, will not form 
mm exceptien to a rule hitherto found 
mheraaL The number of Indian con* 
^ ei si on a acoordiogly appears to be ex- 
ceedingly small) many persons bad 
tpeat a hfe-time in India without hear- 
mf of a smde instance. The few 
wfidft took puce were of the most dis- 
giacefnl duracter, the converts ha- 
ving, in periods of dearth, embraced 
Chri atiaiuty on condition of receivinflr 
a simply ot the necessaries of life, ana, 
€o me return of plenty, havmg imme- 
£ttely reli^>sed into tfaleir former idola- 
try. The propagators of Christianity 
omt to be reminded not only that 
snoi conversions have no merit, but 
that a nun who thus quits a religion 
WUdi he bdieves, to jm>fess another 
which he does not heheve, commits a 
crime, the guflt of which is little dimi- 
inahed by the circumstance that the 
fimner is a fidse, and the latter the 
true rdigion. 

The hnftcacy of missionary preaclu 
ing in past tiaiiH would be a minor 
6oosideratt6a, if there were no dangers 
atteadtogit, for Amm coold then be 
no ofcjeodon to making a fair trial of 
what It aaight efihct in future. But 
it seems impossible to deny, that the 
danger is very eonsfderahk. The em- 
pire of force, exercised by twenty or 
thirty thousand toen over an faundied 
millions, must ahrm be somewhat' 
precarious. Not only are the nativea 
to be kept in subjection, but they are 
to be kept in aubjcction by the In- 
<ttaos ; for the Sepoy fonce, it is well 
known, constitutes the ^leater part 
of that which is naintamed in the 
colonies by the British government. 
Great Britiun, therefore, can never ex- 
pect to maintain her ground vrithont 
much accommodation to the ideas, 
and prtjndices, and even to the ground- 
less apprehensbns, of this numerous 
peopk, who teem to dread that com- 
pulsorv measuiet may be employed 
to malce them embrace Christuunty. 
The catastrophe at Vellore, ntty not, 
as vras at fo^st reported, have aristti 
from the misconduct of the coin- 
mander-ih-chief, or from any measures 
shocking the rdigious prejudices of 
the people ; but it seems unquestioo* 
able, that the dread of such measures 
excited them to such direful extremi- 
ties. The Brahmins, who form the 
first class in the nation, and who pos- 
sess over the minds of the people an 
influence almost supreme, cannot £ul 
to view with the utmost jealousy, both 
the missionaries, and the government 
under whose auspices they are intro- 
duced. — As it thus appears that iktle 
good and much evil may arise from 
missionary preaching, and as govern- 
ment retains in iu own hands the 
power of granting licences, it should 
be very cautious m selecting the per* 
sons to whom such licences are grant- 
ed. It is still more important, that 
in Indiai government should avoid all 

Digitized by 




iDt«rcoane» and wkhholdaBeiicourage- 
mentf from the penoot «o employed. 
The natives tboold be made to undeiv 
stand that the miMionaries act entirely 
from the impulse of their own minds. 

Not that there is reason to despair 
of 8ef»g the light of Christianity dif- 
fused through the Eastern world ; it 
would seem, on the contrary, that the 
aame Fower which at first planted our 
holy religion, has made visftile and aok- 
pie provision for its general diffusion, 
at perhaps no very distant period. 
This provision constats in the decisive 
auperiority in arts and knowledge to 
-which European or Christian nations 
have attained, and in the intimate 
communicatiaQ which the instrumen- 
tality of these arts hu enabled Euro- 
pean nations to form with the most 
distant parts of the globe. America 
belongs entirely to Europe; every 
port of Asia is crowded with her ves- 
sels, and even the wilds of Africa 
are b^;inBiQg to feel her influence. 
Her kmmrledge cannot fail ia time to 
become universal ; for there are natu- 
f9l desires ia the human mind which 
it tends to gratify. In imbibing the 
science and philosophy of Europe, 
more barbarous nations will insensibly 
imbibe her religion also i and an ac- 

quaintance with her Viuntmt and hii 
tory willemUe them to appreciate oi 
what that religion rests, xfere the] 
is opened a vast field for the philan 
thropic exertions o^ those, who havi 
at heart the higher interests of thei 
species. If the funds, which are U 
vished in useless missions were employ 
ed in forming esubGshmenU for in 
stniction, the most beae^ctal and last 
ing effects might be produced. Th 
Indians vrould receve with pleasun 
and grratitude the fruits of such ip 
stitutions, even from hands whid 

.they mi^t judge unhallowed. Tbi 
manner m which so grand an object i 
to be accomplished must of course bi 
determined by a view of the acuml cir 
cumstanoes ot India. European teach 
ers could not be supplied m any pn^ 
portion to the nuoiber required ; bu 
there might be formed, at conveniefi 
stations woughout British India, m 
minaries for the instruction of natif^ 
.teachers, who might afterwards diffusa 
among their countryoMn the knov^ 
ledge which they had acquired.*^ 
Much good may be done by the wi« 
liberality of government ; nothing bu 
mischief can be expected from the ze^ 
of fanatics. 

Digitized by 






tpnUk 4ifimr8.^^ P reparai u ms madejbr cpmdng the Campaigii^^Rafid Pro^ 
gress ^tke ASUei Anmet^^B^te of Vitiona. 

Thb dbtdiiate asd itrequoos vrtittaoce 

fittt ofiiered io Uie peninsiik to the 

nbitioA of Fnttcty ott given to the 

evesu wbiA oc em ied in this port of 

tke wQtidt en mtercst beyond eten 

ibat cscked by the gfeat efforts of 

dher nationf to sopport their indt- 

icodenop. An ea^ cnriostty hts 

been copJoycd to. ditoofer the omtes 

«f that heme ittrit whkh burst forth 

io a coo^ry where its cxisteooe was 

little suspected. . Why did Sjpab, af* 

tcr its govenuBent had been ifissolfedt 

aad its maocj ansihiktied, refiMe that 

obedience to the conqueror so long 

yirkfed by the sutes of Germany 1 

Why» in spite of i^ their ontrages and 

tnunphs, were the Fiench unSbk to 

iibdoe the ntrit of the Spantsh na* 

tisoy althoogh the^r had ensured the 

iaii|Mc«rv subjectioa of the nost 

ooasiderable states of the continent ? 

Ilie Spanish autboritiea were iadeed 

widiout those powers of eonibiaation 

by which the taTadert of their coun* 

tnr anght at once have beta ofcr* 

mdaMd ; yet neither flattery nor me* 

■ace» nekher sufieriag ner reward, 

cottid degmde the n^ neasant of 

Spain to submission» or make him for 

amoaMot forget the wrongs» or be* 

^j the independence, of his country. 

Whence this virtue which Uioaiphed 

«m every teiiptatiO ft » ' t hig patriotic 

couraffewhich encountered etery dan- 
ger ? whence that noble spirit which 
dechred eternal resistance to the in« 
▼ader—- baffled his plans, anj) rendered 
▼am his calculationfri-^MVvented him 
from consolidatbg his power, and pro* 
fidng by his conquests—and, finallyt 
opened a way tor the tiMrrent, by 
mich, in the course of this memora* 
Ue year, the hordes of the inrader were 
swept from this fine country ? 

The causes which produced results 
to the auction of France, while con- 
tending amid the mountains of Spain, 
so^ifitrent firom those which had at* 
tended its eflbrts in Germany and other 
countries, are imperfectly but judi- 
doQsly assigned by one of the mya- 
ders, who was himself the victim of 
Spanish patriotism. « We were call- 
ed,'' says M. de Rocca, a French offi- 
cer of hussars, ** from the sandr plains 
of the north of Germany, wnere we 
had to do with people^ suoject» for the 
nttost part» to goTemments whose forms 
were entirely military. The different 
sovereigns who nnde up the parts of 
the Germanic body had, for more than 
a century, turned all their views to- 
wards perfectmg those military insti- 
ttttioQS which might secure their au- 
thority, and serve their personal arnbi** 
tion ; hut m accnstomiae their subjecu 
to a minutdy punctual mdamct^ they 

Digitized by 


140 EDINBURGH ANNUAL RfiGI^ER, 1818. tCwkf. A 

had weakened the nationa character, 
the only invincihle bulwark which na- 
tioDs can oppose to foreign invaders. 

«« When a province of Germany was 
conquered by the French,^ and could 
no longer receive the orders of iu so* 
vereign, the inferior classes, unaccus* 
tomed to the exercise of their own free 
willy dared not to act without the com- 
mands of theirgovemments or of their 
liege lords: Tnese governments be- 
came, by the very act of conquest, sub* 
ordinate to the conquerors ; and the 
Kfege lordd, long accustomed to witness 
the hourly vexation which the people 
experienced from^the soldiery, resign- 
ed themselves the more easily to the 
evSs which war brings in her train. 

** The clergy in Prussia had but lit* 
tk ascendency over the peopk ; the 
krformatipn nas destroyed among the 
protestants that power which the 
priests preserve, even in our days, in 
some catholic countries, and especial- 
ly in Spain. — ^The men of letters, who 
might have influenced pobhc opimon, 
and made their wisdom subservieiit to 
the cause of their country, were but 
' tmij called to take an active part in 
pubhcafffdrs. Literary reputation was 
the onlyend of their ambttioa, and they 
rarely addicted themselves to occupa- 
tions or atodies applicable to existing 
circunMtances. The real power of se- 
veral states in Crermanv rested on dieir 
military systems, and tfieir pditical ex • 
istence corad not but depend tndrciy 
on the strength or weakoese of their 

<< In the phiasofOermany, the lo* 
ealcireumstcnces of the country did not 
pennit the pccple to escape so easiy 
tram the yoke <»f their oonqnerort at 
in some odier countries of a different 
nature^ Small bodies of troops kept 
a great extent of oonqvered oonntry 
in awe, and assnred the French armies 
of subsistence. The ddxens could 
have found so secure retreats if they 
had tried partiid revolts agaioit the in- 
vaders | besides, the Oermansi accvi* 

tomed to a quiet and regular hStp me 
only roused to make a desperate eSbit 
by the complete breaking up of all their 
former habits. 

^ The French had nothing to fear 
from the inhabitanu of the countries 
conquered by their arms, and the war 
of Germany had been carried on solely 
by armies of regulws, between whom 
their exists rather rivalry than hatred. 
The success of a campaign depended 
on the aggregate of the military ope- 
rations, on the activity and persere* 
ranoe of the commnnden, and their 
sldil in discovering and preventing the 
plans of each other, and in bringing 
vnth skill and celerity great masaea 
dosm on the points of attack. AU 
these little partial actions were avoid* 
ed, which, m war, oidy increase the 
miseries of individuals, widbout con- 
tribnting to any ioDportant advantage $ 
and the talents o» the genenls were 
never baffled by the exertiois of indi- 
viduals, or by the sp#iitaneons move, 
menu of Uie people. 

<* In Germflivy the IVench had only 
to subdue govemmenta and armies) in 
the Spanish peoinsida, the government 
and the anay wti« ahmdy annihilated. 
Buonapaite had invaded Portugal and 
Spain, put to ftghl^ or reduced to cap- 
tivity, the sovereigns of those two 
countries, and dispmed their miHury 
ferots. The Ftench were not called 
to fight against troops of the hnerbut 
against a people fasukttd from all 
edicr continental nations, by their 
buumers, their prejudices, and even 
the nature of tbeir eountry. The 
Spankrds were to oppose to them a 
reaietanoe ao much the more obsti- 
nate, as they believed it to be die 
object of the French gotemment to 
make the peninttda a seoondary state, 
irrevocably subject to the>dommioa of 

** With regard to knowledge and 
the progress of sooiid habits, Spain was 
at least a otntary behind the other 
aataoMoftheeoMaent. Thediftaot 

Digitized by 


Crap. 8.2 



tad almoit insular tituatioa of the 
ocmntiy, and the severity of its reU- 
riooa iastitutioDSy had preveDted the 
Spaniards from taking part in the dis<- 
potet sad controversies which had a« 
sitated and enlightened Europe during 
tJie sixteenth century. They scarcely 
diougfaty even in the eighteenth, of the 
^ixloeophical spirit which had heen 
ooe of the causes of the revolution in 

** Although the Spaniards were ez- 
txemelj indolent^ and there were found 
in their administration^ that disorder 
and corruption which are the inevita*^ 
ble consequences of a long despotism^ 
then- national character had not been 
soDied. Their govemmenty arbitrary 
aa it was, bore no resemblance to the 
abaohite mflitary power existing in 
GemaQTy vbere the constant submis- 
. of au to the orders of one» con- 

ttnuidly pcesscd.down the i^rinffs of 
individiBU character. Ferdinana the 
CatholiCf Chacle^ V. and Philip II. 
had, it ia true, usurped almost ail the 
ptivikgcs of the grandees and of the 
Cortefl^and they had annihilated Spa* 
nsh liberty ; but th^ weakness of go* 
venunent) imder their successors, had 
always left to the peo^e, notwith- 
standing the despotism of the sove- 
reign, a practical fii^om, which was 
wen cairied even to insubordination* 
** In the — aa l fl ddthe Cci t pa n spates, 
BO naniea had hitherto been heardt 
bat those of the sovereign and his ar- 
mies. But since F^^hrand the Car 
tholic had united the different king- 
doms of SpsUB» scarcely a smgle reign 
had passed in which ttie people had 
not given aeasiUe proofs of their ex* 
jttence and power by impo^ng con- 
ditions oa their masters, or by ex- 
pelling the npaifters or favourites. 
Whea the inhabitants of Madrid re- 
volted, and demanded from Charles. 
III. the dismissal 9f his miniater 
Sqoilaci, the king himself was obliged 
bo ap|»ear, io omr to ^ofppouad WKJk 

the people, and to employ the inter •« 
vention of a monk, bearing a crucifix 
in his hand. The court, which had i)e4 
to Aranjuez, attempted afterwards tx> 
send the Walloon guards against Ma« 
drid : the people killed several, an4 
the cry was, " If the Walloons enter, 
the Bourbons shall not reign*'' The 
Walloons did not enter,— -oquilaci was 
dismissed, and order was restored.-— 
At Berlin and throughout Prussia 
again, the inhabitants respected the soU 
dsers of their king, as thesoldiers them- 
selves respected their miliury com« 
manders; at Madrid, the sentinels pla- 
ced on guard, toattend to the executioa 
of theorders of their sovereign, yielded 
the precedence to the meanest burgess^ 

** The revenues of the Spani^ crown 
were ver^ scanty, and consequently 
could mautain but a very limited num* 
ber of troops. The regiments of the 
line, with the efxception of gome priw 
vileged corps, were incomplete,^ ill 
paid, aqd ill disciplined. The priesta 
were the onlv powerful executive mi- 
litia whom tne kings of Spain could 
command ; it was by the exhortations 
of the ministers from their altars, and. 
the presentation of pontifical omar^ 
meats and relics, th^ they repressed 
and dissipated popular tumults. 

<<The Spanish priests hated the 
French from patriotism and from in* 
terest ; for they well knew that the 
intention was to at>olish their privi- 
leges, and to deprive them of their 
riches and temporal power. Their 
opinioa swayed tha^ of the greater 
par^ of the nation. Every Spaniard 
regarded the public cause as his own 
pnvate quarrel, and the French hadf 
in slutrt, almost as many individual 
enemies to fight as the SpanisAi penin- 
sula contained inhalNtants. 

<<The high and barren mountains 
which surround and intersect Spain» 
were peopled by warlike tribes, alw 
ways armed, for the purpose of smug* 
gling, and accustomed to baffle the 

Digitized by 




f^iilir troops of their own coiiiitr|r, 
wEich were frequeDdy tent in pursuit 
•f them. The untamed character of 
the inhabitants of the peninsula—the 
mildness of the climate, which admits 
of liTin^ in the open air almost aU the 
year ; tne inaccessible retreats of the 
inland mountains ; the sea» which 
washes such extensive shores ; all the 
great circumstances arising from the 
national character, the climate, and lo- 
cal situation, could not fail of secu- 
ring for the Spaniards numberless faci- 
Kties for escaping from the oppression 
^ their conquerors, and for multiply- 
ing their own forces, whether by trans- 
porting them rapidly to those points 
on which the French were weak, or in 
securing their escape from pursuit.'' 

These observations may account in 
some measure for the unexpected diffi- 
culties which the French encountered 
in their attempt to subdue the penin- 
sula. But even French vanity will 
find it difficult to ascribe to such 
circumstances the overwhelming dis- 
asters which, in the course of the year 
J 81 3, drove their conquered armies 
from this fine country. The splendid 
and decisive triomphs of this year be- 
long to England alone ; and a rapid 
sketch of the circumstances which en- 
abled her thus to put forth herenergies, 
will be no unsuitable prefiice to the ac- 
count of this nkemorable campaign. 

The important changes which had 
tlken placfe in the affairs of Europe, 
since the beginning of the last rear, 
prescribed an alteration in the politics 
of this country towards Spain, and 
rendered it an tmpenous duty on the 
ministers to make the most signal 
effort for the liberation of the penin- 
sula. Many statesmen of great emi- 
nence thoueht that there were grounds 
for such a change of policy even durii^ 
the last campaign; We shall briefly 
recapitulate the circumstances on 
which this opinion was founded. 

So early as April 1811, it was 

knows in tUs country, at least tc 
government, that Russia was laying 
the foundation of that great eSorl 
which she afterwards made for secu^ 
ring her independence. It wis known 
also to be her object to establish such 
a system of resistance, as that, if the 
French should persevere in their plani 
of conquest andaggression, they rrtfghl 
not only be expeUed from Russia, but 
followed by her victorious legions into 
other countries. As the knovm cba« 
racter of the French government pro- 
mised an obstinate perseverance in itH 
aggressive policy, so there was every 
reason to look for the most important 
consequences from the new systen^ 
adopted by Russia. It was the duty 
therefore of the British ministers to 
prepare for the crisis whidi was ap- 
proaching ; and as the efforts of Rus- 
sia terminated not only in the expul'^ 
sion of the French from' her own ter- 
ritories, but in the revival of the inde- 
pendence of Prussia, while an oppor- 
tunity was at the same time afforded 
to Austria to assert her rank among 
the nations of the continent, th^ 
moment seemed the most favourable 
which had ever occurred for the libera- 
tion of Europe. The successes of] 
the last campaign in the penintulai 
besides were such as to encourage the 
most sanguine hopes in future; and 
even the circumstances in the situation 
of the French whichhadso greatly con- 
tributed to these successes Were still 
farther calculated tcr excite expecta-^ 

Whife the efforts of the British in 
the peninsub had Been thuS vigorous 
andsAccessfdl^ an nnaccountablefailure 
in the means of the French had be- 
come apparent. The French govern - 
ment in Spahr, under Joseph Bttona* 
parte, was reinarkable foi* imbedUtyt 
and the efforts of the atmy were of 
course without tnity either of coun- 
cil or action. The central govem- 
Dient under the intrusttt king seemed 

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Cbap. 8.] 



to be without power, without autho* 
fiCf, without talents to create k- 
ipect* or to command obedience. The 
Fmidi armies in Spain, instead of con- 
cntradog under Joseph's orders, had 
bceii dispersed every day more and 
OMire oter the Penirtsnla — Weak on 
•verj point, they exhausted fhem' 
aehes rfen by their Tictories over the 
Sfunxds ; and in Galicia, Portagal, 
aad the Atturias, they had lost, even 
MKmg the insurgent peasants, their 
vooted reputation of invincibility. 

At the dynasty of the wretched in- 
trader was dosea by the successes of 
that yeor-i-as he was present in pei^On 
at die battle of Vittoria, and as the 
French ascribe much of their misfor- 
tones to his weakness and impolicy, 
de ^etch of his character and pro- 
ceedings wUeh they have given us may 
aot be nnmteitsCing. 

Joseph faacied, we are' told, that he 
mi^hC attach the people of Spain to his 
sway by the well-knowir mildness of his 
ch ar a cte r, in the same manner tA he had 
gained the Neapolitans i and he had al- 
lowed the French troops to advance 
from all sides into the peninsnlzt, with 
die inteDtion of gaining provinces, that 
he might rei^ over a greater eltent of 
cooatry. He had contracted habits 
o€ mdMence upon the peaceful throne 
of Maples. Instead of following his 
amies he remained in the capital, 
p l a s t e d it dttsipation, and reg^ttitig 
^ &ghts of Italy. He wanted to 
deep and reign at Madrid as he had 
tee at Naples, even before his armies 
hd oooquered Ibr him, supposing the 
ca mu e st posAle, a kingdom at the 
pnce rf their blood. 

He filled die c<4umn8 of hts state 
JQoraal with decrees which were ne- 
wr executed, and scarcely read ; he 
fSfeto one church the wax and sacred 
QKs of another, pillaged lone before 
^tfae French, or stripped b^r uie Spa- 
■wds tliemselves. He lavished the 
teoratioQS of his royal order on hit 

courtiers, who did not dare to wear 
them in any place which was not occu« 
pied by the French, for fear of bekg 
murdered by the Spanish peasants. He 
made several promotions in his Spanish 
army, which, however, was sot as yet 
in existence ; he gave away places in 
reversion, governments, and adminis* 
trations, in the most distant provinces 
of the kingdom in both hemispheres, 
while he dared not sleep even a few 
leagues from Madrid in one of his coun- 
try bouses. Like his brother at P^s, 
he pulled down old buildings to beau- 
tify his Capital, but he had no money 
to raise a single new edifice, and the 
extent of his rtkunifi<^nce was the re* 
moval of rubbishy 

Iir order to please the people, he en- 
deavoured to imitate the solemn pomp 
and grave ceremony of hisjMredecessors. 
He marched on foot at the head of 
processions throt/gh the streets of Ma- 
drid, making the officers of his staff, 
and the soloters of his body guard, 
follow him with lighted tapers in their 
hands. All these pretensions to sanc- 
tity, this affectation of mum^cence, 
and absurd prodigality, only made him 
an object of ridicule and contempt* 

The Spaniards had amused them* 
selves with spreading ia report that 
Kmg Joseph was a ohe-eyed drunkard, 
which made a profound impresuon on 
th^ imagination qf the country people. 
It was m vain that he endeavoured to 
overcome the popular pr^udice by 
shewing himself often in public ; the 
people never lost the conceit that he 
was one-eyed. We are told that even 
on the day of his coronation, at one of 
the theatres, a farce, called Harlequin ^ 
Emperor of the Moon, was played se- T 
veral times. During the representa- 
tion, the people made applications to 
the ephemend situation of Joseph nt 
Madrid. Devotees, who were accus- 
tomed to mingle in all their conversa- 
tions the ejaculation Jesus, Marian if 
Joseph, stopped short w^hen ihey had 

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proneancod the two first munes, aodt 
pau9ixi?9 would use the paraphraiei Y 
el Padre da fnuestro tenor ^ lest they 
mieht draw down a benediction on Jo« 
tr^ by naming the taint who was his 
supposed patron in Heaven. 

The good nature of Joseph came 
afterwaraa to be considered as weak- 
ness, even by the French themselves. 
After battles had been vron over the 
Spaniards^ he would go himself to the 

Sisoners sent from the army to the 
etiro, and receive their oaths of fide* 
lity, tdUng them that they had been 
deceived by tnitors, and that he, as 
their king, wished only Sor their happi- 
ness and that of their countrr. Tne 
prisoners, who expected nothing less 
than to be shot, immediately made 
no scruple of takine the oaths of sub- 
mission required ofthem, but the mo- 
ment they were armed and equipped 
they deserted and returned to their own^ 
armies; so that the French soldiers 
called King Joseph the administrator 
in chief of the military depots of the 
supreme junta* Evan French marshals 
and generals, we are told, were very 
unwiSing to obey a man whom they 
did. not consider a Frenchman, since 
he had been acknowledged King of 
Spain ; and they often contradicted 
bun, and sought to disgust him, that 
they might be sent bacl into Germa* 
ny. They would have been happy, at 
any price, to have quitted an irregular 
war, which had become unpopular even 
in the army. Joseph had neither enough 
of military talent and authority, nor 
sufficient confidence in himself, to ven- 
ture to command sych (^rations as 
the changes in the general situatidti of 
affidrs imperiously required. He dared 
not issue any new order without con- 
sulting has brother. The plans sent 
from Paris, or from Germany, fre- 
quently arrived too late, and they could 
never be otherwise than impmectly 
executed by one who had not concei- 
ved them. 

Such was the character of Joseph sis 
drawn by his own countryaoen ; but 
the circumstances which had recently 
occurred so £ivoarable to the caoae 
of the allies, althotigh they were in 
some measure the result of the weak 
and insignificant character of the bead 
of the central govenu^entt were alap 
to a great degree inseparable from 
the nature of the enterprise which the 
French had undertaken^ When the 
ruler of France confined himself to oue 
object, which, however impossible the 
attainment of it might be, was interest- 
ing to the French, his army seconded 
his views, and was ready to sacrifice 
itself in Ids service i but when hu am- 
bition led him to distant enterprises ■ 
when he embarked in projects which 
were carried into effieot at the same 
time in distant parts of the world, and 
when, instead of directing the execu- 
tion bimsdf, he lefit it to a government 
more weak and imbecile than any wbicb 
had difgraced Europe, then, as might 
have b^n expected, his views of ag-i^ 
grandizement received a check, which^ 
in the issue, proved decisiveand fatal, i 
Such was the state of affairs at the be- 
ginning of this jear. The French were 
not in a condition to act ofiensively ; 
and, so longas the war in the north con- 
tinued, could have no other object in 
view but to maintain the ground which 
they occupied. On the part of the 
allies, however, this interval was spent 
in preparations for an active and glo« 
riotts camoaurn. 

Much had already been done for 
Spain. A large and fertile district of 
the kingdom had been finallv recover- 
ed, and an opportunity had been a£^ 
forded to the Spaniards to embody a 
considerable army. The Spanish go • 
vemment, indeea, was still weak and 
inefficient } yet experience had taught 
them to correct some of the grosser 
errors of their policy. An excelknt 
symptom of this amendment was shewn 
in tne appointment of Lord Welling- 

Digitized by 


Chap. &] 



ton to die thief command of the Spa- 
laA annics.— The cortes, on the sug- 
mtkm of the regency, passed a decree, 
aw e ttifl g his lordship with extraordi*- 
BUj powers as generalitsimo of the 
Spanish land forces. A portion of 
mc Spanish general staff was appoint- 
ed to attend him, and to them all the 
comflnnnications JFrom the different af* 
■nes wete to be addressed : on the 
ochrr- handy all orders lielaciTe to the 
amnea were to emanate from his lord- 
ship through the channel of the Spa- 
losh staff near his person.-^-General 
Castanosy who was much in the confi- 
dence of Manfuis Wellington, arrived 
mt SeiriOe early in the present y^r, to 
prepare the Spanish army for active 
^peradons ; and it was understood that 
a great and determined effort would be 
Mde by the Spaniards themselves in 
the coarse of the approaching spring* 
The cort^ ^^v^cea to furnish Lord 
Wdiington wnh an army of 50,000 
meo £or the ensuin? campaign ( and 
£or these troops his lordship, had 
the power of appointing officers. A 
corps of reserve was also formed in An* 
^aiiay and another in Oallicia, in or* 
^er to maintain the more prominent 
fsrce in a condition of permanent effi- 

Yet were the discontents of the Spa- 
MBtds, aad their distrust of the Brt- 
tkb, by no means removed. The abo- 
fitioa of tlfe Inquisition 9 the suppres- 
sion of the convents, and the establish- 
Bent (^ persons not noble by birth in 
the departments formerly occupied by 
aebles alone, appear to have excited 
about this time murmurings among the 
clergy and nobility of the ancient re- 
gime ; some of whom, in conjunction 
with the partisans of Joseph Buona- 
parte, published libels npon the re* 
geocy, aod against Britisii influence. 
Three or feur of this fiction were ar- 
lested to Seville. The regency, on 
das occasion, demanded of the cortes 
a temporary sospension of the laws re- 


lating to personal liberty, that they 
nnight arrest a greater number of the 
traitors, but were refused bythecortes, 
who did not think the affiur of suft- 
-eient importance to require so strong 
a measure. Ode of the libels was in 
the following terms >— «« The streets 
of Seville present to the Spanish peo- 
ple, to that people ever pious and 
tiriendly to the mOnktf, a spectacle 
which must exeite the most painful 
sentiments. ~ Priests, who never could 
have believed that the SasaUest op(K>si« 
tion could be made to their assemUing, 
present themselves $ the intendant com^ 
inands them in the name of the govern- 
ment not to assemble^ and prohibits 
their entrance into the monasteries; 
they entreat, they supplicate, but they 
ar^ not heard } they are abandoned, 
they are repulsed ; and to avoid dying 
^rith hunger, these wretches disperse 
themselves through the streets, aad 
beg their bread from door to ddor, 
clad in their sacred habits i they stop 
in the churches, and there implore th^ 
pityof thepopuhK:e. What have thtae 
ministers of Cod done i what crioie 
have they committed?'' Ice— *Such 
weretheartificesof traitors, who sought 
to disunite and enslave the country. 

The Spanish troops meanwhile had 
been slowly acquiring discipline . and 
experience. — The British army had rc^ 
ceived a strong reinforcement of ^,000 
men after the battle of Salanwwea, and 
discipline had been restored by strict 
regulations, and enforced during the 
period of repose. The disposable troops 
at the opening of the campaign were 
estimated at about SOXXX) British and 
Portuguese, with 40 or 50,000 Spa- 
nish regulars, besides a considerable 
guerilla force, which waa hourly in* 
creasing.— The French force in Spain 
was stiU however very nmnevous ; and 
Buonaparte, notwithsunding the sig- 
nal reverses he bad sustained in the 
north, was unwilling to reduce his ar- 
my in the peninsula^ or to hasard the 
t ^ 

Digitized by 



loss of 80 ffreat a country. He had 
hfen compdledy however^ to make nu- 
merous drafts to supply pfficers for the 
immense levies which he was then rai- 
«ug ; but the deficiencies thua occa- 
sioned were replaced from the new 
oonscription. No aooner» howeter, did 
be suspect the intentions of Austria* 
than he found it necessary to relax fior 
m tiBie his exertions io Spain ; and con* 
aiderable detachments were withdrawn 
to reinforce the graiui army on the 
£lbe« Soult, v<^ho had, long possessed 
the chief direction -of the war in Spain* 
was called to the assistance of his mas- 
ter in Gemmnyi and as the enemy's 
force had been thus considerably re^ 
ducedy Lord Wellington hoped» by 
•oe grand efforty to liberate the penin- 
sula* and drive the French beyond the 

The aUied forces, before the openiug 
of the campaigpy men spread over a 
,wry cxtensate line* 'l«ord Wdling? 
toa» with the main body of the British 
•ad Portuguese^ occupied cantonments 
•long the northern frontier of Portu- 
galy whJle.General HilU with a part of 
^hearmy« »nd with the Spanish forces 
ubder MuriUoy was posted in Estre- 
madura. The sec6nd kind third Spa* 
huh armiesy commanded by the Due 
Jdel Parque and General Ellio* were sU- 
tionedy the one in La Mauchay and the 
«ther on the frcmtiers of Murda and 
Valencia. The force recently levied 
in Andilosiay which was denominated 
the army of resccve» had set out from 
£ev9le» under the command of General 
O^Donhely who» on account of his ex- 
}»loits in CstakmiRy had recseived the 
tideof C<»udedeAbisbaL The army 
of Galliday under the cogimand of Ge- 
•neral Castaoosy vrU stationed on the 
frontien of the promce of that name. 
This efficer was devoted to Lord Wei- 
iington, and the army of Gallida was, 
-of course, vtrj much in the same si- 
tuation as if it had been under the im- 
jaediatccomAaad of his lordship. The 

whole forces of the north of Spaii^ 
therefore, which, besides the regulv 
troops, comprehended numerous bands 
of guerillas, were completely under the 
controul of the British cominander. 
. Such vras the situation of the allied 
armies. The enemy again, enligfafiened 
hj the reverses of the last year, occii* 
pied a more concentrated iienatio»« 
The three French armies of Porta|^ 
the centre and the soulli, were united 
in Castile, uttder Joseph Buooapaits^ 
whose headquarters were at Madrid* 
The Srtny ot^PortQ|pl was imder die 
immediate cioitiffiand of General Reiile^ 
who bad his head*qusirter« at Vrihdo* 
lid ; that of the centre obeved the oi^ 
ders of Count d^Erion^ wnose head» 

Quarters were in the vicinity of hf** 
rid, while the army of the south had 
its head-quartei^ at Toledo. The po- 
sition of the allies thus formed a vtrr 
extensive semiciccle round that vphicfi 
the enemy occupied in the centre of 
Spain* On this circumstance, perhaps^ 
the French founded then- hojpes of a 
successful resistance, conceiviog tlun 
by the rapid movement o( their con- 
centrated forces ^ley might hafle at- 
tacks nude from so many diSenent 
Soints. The plan of the campaigiH 
owever, which Lord Wellington had 
formed was profound and judidoQa. 
General Hill at first threiteiied M*. 
drid ; but so soon as the season for ac- 
tion arrived, he turned to the leftp 
marched through the Puerto de Ba- 
ncs, and joined the main army, whidi 
was assembling in the nei|^boai4iood 
of Ciudad Rodrigo* General O'Doo- 
nel, at the same time, marched throogli 
Estremadura, and the vrtiok force 
of the allied army directed its cowrac 
northward on the line of the Dooro. 
That river, the largest in Spain, had* 
in the preceding campaign, proved mu 
important barrier | and the Fiesicb^ 
who |x>ssessed alone its northern bank 
a senes of fortified positions^ liope«^ 
for a time at kast, to diopute the pai*- 

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Wft. LiOfd Weffingtotii howef«rf b)r 
a verw sUe arraageiDeat, completely 
Mvvided agaiott thk olMUcleb Hit 
feioe, as already nentioaedf was difi» 
M iato tkvee p«utt» of wUch tbe C9ii« 
liCk ooapoaed chieiy of Ivht txoopf^ 
vaicoannaaded hj his loraship to per* 
ma. With these he pushed on to Sa* 
lHHica» and once aM^re deliTered that 
fawtt oty from thr modani Vaadals. 
The French gvneralyVillatyhad scarce^ 
If tia» to «iraciiate it with the loss <£ 
ttO of l^s rear gpard ; the Brttiih eo- 
lired tbe town at fall g^op* The 
•Mt« comoMOided by Sir llowlaod 
rail iachidsag only one ditision of 
Bribshi aaowed in a parallel direc- 
iIm with the centre on the left bank 
af the Doiiro. But the grand feature 
of the ^an consisted in the passage of 
teaiaiB body of the army to the north 
af the Donro at Braganza; wbenoet 
tbaicT the eoamaad of Sir Thomas 
Gntem, it proceeded along the right 
bank of the river, thus superseding the 
mtctamtj of fbndng apassaffe in the 
bee of the enemy. The right of the 
"DomrOf throagboat this patt of its 
. is rag^d and precipitoas» and 
* f commands the raDOitte 
:-$ ana the French had conUently 
reekoaed oa advantq^ whidi this 
-kie plaa eatitely de£eaM.-^SBch were 
the adsDoahle a iiaug e a n a te made for 
0fBmg the campaign^ and they wene 
■ a a ecate d m^ ability scarcely iaitrior 
l» tint by which they had been fdanned. 
Thaee asM^essive dispositions baffled 
Hoaee ditf ptu w si ons made by the ent- 

7 Cor arresdag the Tictorious progress 
the aSiea. Their detachments on 
h*the6deaof theDavro retired prod- 
jkunlj^ aod Lord Wdibgton adtan- 
adi withoot any obstacle besides those 
wliih natare Meented. 

The Brkim aomasaoderi attended 
hyUa staff^ and senfal British and 
ttpaniah geaeiV^ reauiaed a fisw days 
ia8ahunaaea» The flsomiag after the 
FrawtKhadhaai drivon awnyy TfjDwum 

was performed at the cathedral, and 
the sendee was attended by Lord Wd* 
Ungton^s— -This cathedral is conridered 
as one of the finest in Spain. It is 
hvih of a white freestone, is surmonnt* 
ed with elegant torrets, ba^ns^ 
arches, and a large dooM, SAid adorned 
with a profbsion of canred work in a 
rich and elaborate st^le. It is a very 
lofty and spacious edifice, standbg in 
an open square. The grand alur is 
▼ery magnificent | opposite to which 
stands the chancel, greatly resembling 
those of the English cathedrals. The 
alur and chancel are surrounded by a 
acreen of stone*work, ezqidsitely car- 
ved. The edifice contains two organs 
ia the gallery, one of which is remark- 
able for iu flise and superior tone. The 
church also, from its nranificent en« 
dowments, is able to maintain a very 
superior band of ringers firom Italy. 
Yet neither the magnificence nor the 
sanctity of this fine bmlding would 
have restrained the licentious fury of 
the invaders ; for shortly before the ar* 
«ival of the British it had been doomed 
to destruction. A large contribution 
could not ^from a totS deficiency <^ 
means) be discharged | and the French 
frenenu, ia coosequencCi threatened to 
destroy the cathedral, unless his unrea- 
spnalbb demands were compUed with. 
The "reply returned was, tnat as the 
cathedral was piiblic property, its de- 
etruction would not affect the personal 
interests of {individuals, and that no one 
would interftre. The arrival, how* 
ever, of the £nglish prevented the ac« 
complishment of this barbarous reso* 

The litoatioa of Sahunanca eom- 
maads laany advantages I the natural 
potttion is stron^r, and puns have been 
taken to secure u by a substantial wall» 
wMoh, in its most exposed rituationt 
k flanked by a strong bastion. The 
appearance of the town since the inva* 
sioti of the French, eidtes many ma* 
hmcholy rsflaotions to those who bafa 

Digitized by 



heard tbe^ceoantB of its former iiHig« 
nificeace, and hi^h reputation as a seat 
of learning. The remains of nineteen 
splendid c(dlegesy boik of a handsome 
white stone, most elaborately and cks- 
McaUy omametited» are still wisifclL. 
Several of these colleges v/trt. decfioa 
ted entirely to Irish students, numbers 
of whom are to be met with in . the 
church, the army, and various otheir 
departmeots ef the state* They have 
now become naturalised, and are said 
to constitute the best informed phrt of 
the community* 

During the advance of the army 
through Spain, « marked difference 
was observed in the policy which the 
Prench had pursued towards tins oouiu 
try from that which they appear to 
have adopted towards Portugal. Their 
•chief aim, during their n^ndence ia 
Spain, was to introduce an alteratioa 
in the manners and customs of the peo- 
ple, and to render them more cong^ 
Bial with their own views ; but as they 
4!ould scarcely ever hope to reien wttn 
unlimited sway over Portugd, that 
country was treated more in the light 
of a conquered kingdom, and rapine 
and devastation irere universally com- 
emitted. In Spain, indeed, every est»- 
bhshment was destroyed ; and the in. 
vaders, while they secuned the king, 
and frightened ttie eovemraent into 
obedience, annihilated the influence of 
the priests, and abolished all leHgiotts 
and learned institutions yAh remorse- 
less rigour. Those walls, which, du- 
ring the prosperous days of Spain, con- 
.tained all that is estimable m science 
9nd hteraturet were now converted in- 
to receptacles fot* the passing armies, 
which uter^aiely pcey^ upon the vi- 
tals of the country. 

The British army, which had thus 
^ vapidly penetrated mto Spain, war io 
*the hnest condition ; it was exceeding- 
ly healthy, and had enjoyed a long re- 
pose, while the check whieh it met 
with last year only redoubled its ar- 

dour and enthusiasm.' The infantry 
were we& prided with tents in thu 
campaign, which entei^ th6 health 
and comfort of the soldier, and proved 
a powerful assistance in preserving the 
regiments, which, in former campaigner 
"iivfeso greatly reduced by sicknesa^ 
faiigue, and extreme exposure to the 
weather. The P<ortuguese troops had 
also a fine appearance ^-^ttt the equip- 
ment of the Spaniards was more defec- 
tive. The fbllowinK account has beefi 
given by an eye-witness of their ap- 
pearance at a review. ** The generB- 
lissimo (Castanos) gorgeously arrayed, 
was mounted upon a black Andabisian 
horse, in a full suit of while laced re* 
gimentals, surrounded by his staff, ia 
blue uniforms, and escorted by a troop 
of royal lancers, clothed in yeUow. 
There were from B to 6000 men upoa 
the ground. An inspection of necea* 
saries formed one part of tbeoeremony, 
of which, from motives of . curiosity- 
alone, I wished to be a spectator Had 
the men all been marched through 
Monmouth street, in order tblt ever^ 
one* might suit himself aoaording to hta 
taste, it is hardly possible to suppose a 
selection more ridiculou^y happy thap 
the assembli^ I then witnessed, as to 
shape, tic^ur, and <)uality.— ^Notwitb- 
standing the great defideacy of ap- 
pointment and discipline in this armfy^ 
the men are naturallv fine lo6king ; aod 
if well orgamzed, clodied, aud officer- 
. ed^ would no doubt prove a formidable 
force. The <Acers, in gwen^'' adds 
the same writer, ** are wretched and 
miserable in their appearance} their 
dress is not often better thsm that of 
the men, and ecfuaUv ihrgular and ua- 
miliury. I have dtten seen- them eat- 
ing aad drinking, and conversing fami- 
liarly, vrith the privates ; and it is not 
unusual to meet an olEkrer riding in 
good fellowship with one of them upon 
the. same mule, the animal bearing the 

Ersomd bagnge of both his ridors*'' 
HwithstanuDg thewhimiical appear- 

Digitized by 


Chap. 8.] 



^ of the Spanish army, it was des«. 
tiaed very 80#n to take a part in trans*. 
icdODa of the greatest moment, and to 
prove kself not unworthy of the task: 
ODpfided to it. 

Xrord Wellington left the command 
of the centre and right of the army to 
Sir Rowland Hill, and joined the left 
under Sir Thomas Granam at Carve- 
Igos. On the SUt of May this wing 
crossed the £zla, and, passing through 
Z4mora, arrived on the 2d of June at 
Toro, the French having evacuated 
both these places on the approach of 
the allies. — The most interesting miU« 
tary movement which occurred upon 
the march was the fording of the nver. 
Dooro under the walls of Toro. This, 
place is, to all appearance, impregna- 
bJy fortified bj nature on the western -. 
side, and certainly not wanting in de- 
fence on every otner, the whok heing 
surrounded by ^n exceedingly strong 
high wall. The enemy, a few days be* 
fiire the amVal of the 3ritisb, destrpy- 
ed the bridge, to secure themselves 
from pursuit ; and their astonisbn^ent 
most have been great to find that the 
advantages which the city possessed 
foraied no obstacle to the progress of 
the allied forces* The enemy's right 
and left being quickly turned in suc- 
Qfisaion, he was compelled instantly to 
letire before the combined army. The 
nver, at this place, is very deep, and 
flows with a rapid stream. A little be- 
low the bridge there is a fordable pas- 
age for cavalry ; yet the cavalry of 
the aQied army, although passing in 
as immense body at one time, were 
fi»ted to pursue a diagonal, rather 
than a direct course. A snudl pro- 
portion only of the horses could keep 
tlieir legs, the rest having been forced 
absolutely to swim through the tor- 
rent. Other portions of the army 
crossed the Ezla ; the fordings pro- 
^ fatal to many, though not perhaps 
to the extent which might reasonably 

have been expected, from the difficult 
ties attending the passage. 

The city of Toro, of which the En|[« 
lish had now got possession, is smaS, 
but, handsome and compact; and its 
ai^pearance, when viewed from a dis« 
taoce, is very imposing. From the spot, 
on which the bridge destroyed by the 
French stood, a wide and excdlent road 
runs in a serpentine course to the sum* 
mit of a very lofty precipice, which 
forms the scite of the town i in front 
is a fine, verdant, and level country^ 
aboundmg in villages; while on the 
opposite side, the view is beyond con- 
ception rich and extensive. 

The division of Sir Thomas Gra- 
ham h^ now effected a junction with 
the Gallician army, which formed its 
extreme left — During the 3d of June, 
Lord Wellington halted at Toro, in 
order that the rear, which had been 
detained by the difficulty of crossing 
the Ezla, might have time to close in. 
On the 4fth the whole army marched 

on ValladoUd Thus had Lord Wei- 

lington, by advancing against the ene*, 
my along the northern bank of the 
Douro, entirely deprived him of the 
protection which h^ might have de- 
rived from havbg that river in his 
front, and compelled him to evacuate 
his strong positions. 

The French force on the Douro be- 
ing unable to arrest the rapid advance 
ofthe allies, their army at Madrid was . 
placed in a very critical situation. By 
remaining there it might have been cut 
off from the other army, and from the 
high road leading to the French fron- 
tier* It was therefore determined to 
abandon the capital without a strug-^ 
gle;<^-on the 27th of May all the 
troops in Madrid and on the Ta^us 
began their retreat, and on the Sd 
crossed the Douro. Although the 
different French armies were thus uni- 
ted, they did not attempt to defend 
VaUadohd^ or the passage of the Pisu- 

Digitized by 



ergB, but GODtiauSed tMr retrett widir 
out intenniaiioii tilt they arrived at 
Burgoa. The sffied armies advanced 
to Palencia* A large force of tbe ene- 
my had recently occupied this towBy 
where their 'head quarters were esta- 
blished. — Joseph Buonaparte had ta* 
ken flight the evening before the si* 
lies entered The people w«re rejoiced 
at their arrival^ as the enemy, dluring 
fab stays treated them with ^reat seve- 
rity.— The three mat divisions of the 
army concentrated around this town^ 
part of the cavidry and the staff being 
quartered within its walls, and the rest 
encamped on the plains around. 

The town is target but has an air of 
poverty, though when viewed from a 
distance it assumes a fine i4>pearance. 
It has a lar^ cathedral church, which, 
though plain in its external appearance, 
is handsomely and elaborately orna- 
mented in the interior. The city con- 
tains also several convents ; these build- 
ings are spacious, but their estabUsh- 
ments are very poor .-^— In the environs 
of the town, and occupying a space 
scarcely less than that of the town it- 
•df, stand the remains of the once 
magnificent and wealthy convent of 
^aint Francisco, which some years ago 
attracted the cupidity of Buonaparte, 
who was unwilling to suffer an order 
•o rich and pow^ul to exist. Not 
^ntented with ruining this splendid 
^establishment, he caused eighteen un- 
fbrtunate friars to be surrounded and 
put to death in the cloisters. A lay 
brother, a venerable old man, who was 
under Ubrarian tp the house, and who 
Still remained in charge oi the little 
property left by the plunderers, rela- 
ted to a British officer, with tears in 
his eyes, and a just expression of in* 
dignation, the account of this cruel 
murder, of which he himself was a 
melancholy witness. — Much of the 
building of this monastery still re- 
mains notwithstanding the devasta- 

tion it has sustained. The eatablMi^ 
ment appears formerly to havt itt<* 
duded an extensive fibrary. many of 
the books belonginfir to which havl» 
been recently carried away. The of^ 
fioes are n>acioii6 and ctovenieBt, and 
bespeak tlie feraier splendour of the 
institution.— The country round Pb« 
lencia Is well peopled, and numerouf 
villages ai^ seen in all directioM. The 
inhabitants stated that the French of- 
ficers abandoned the place in full con* 
fidence of a speedy return, little ex* 
pecting the decisive events wfaiqfa were 
so soon to overwhelm them. 

At Burgos the whole of the enemy^ 
armiesof the centre— of Portugal— and 
of the north, were assembled ; and » 
this strong-hold formed the key cC 
the north of Spain, and the last bey 
fore reaching the £bro, it seemed that 
here the great stand must be made* 
Lord Wellington gave his army a 
short repose, which had been render- 
ed necessary by the unpardleled rapi* 
dity of the march, and then pushed 
forward with the cavalry and light 
troops to reconnoitre the enemy^s po* 
sition, and drive them to some decisive 
measure. They were found coveringr 
Burgos in a strong position, but a 
charge of British caviury soon turned 
both their flanks, and obliged them to 
fall back behind the river Urbehr. la 
the course of the following night th^ 
vrithdrew their whole force through 
the town of Burgos, having £nt c^ 
stroyed the works of the castle ; and 
on the foQowing day all their troops 
were in full retreat towards the £bn>» 

Lord Wellington did not pursue the 
enemy along the main road, where the 
passage of the river might have been 
disputed, and his progress obstructed 
by the strong fortress and defiles of 
Pancorbo. As soon as he saw that 
Burgos had been abandon^, he or- 
dered the allied army to make a move* 
ment on its left| with the view of pasa* 

Digitized by 




ing tbe Ebro near k« tonree. The 
^aemjt by whom this meatme aeems 
to have been unexpected, had made 
BD pitmaion for guarding the passage | 
sua Lord WeUingtOB crossed the 
mtr fHthodt oppMtion. He had 
now not only oyercdme the barrier of 
the Ebroy but was in a conditioB to 
threaten the rear of the ^lemy, and his 
communications with France. 

Every step the army now adTanccd 
brought it into a naore mountainous re- 
gion ; the roadsy however, for the m6st 
party were ^ood, and the country ge- 
nerally fertile. — ^The inhabitants re- 
garded the approachof the British with 
a greater dmee of enthusiasm and cu • 
riosity than had been displayed in more 
•outhiem districts* In the course of 
the march the people assembled in 
crowds, and hailed their allies with 
shouts of JOT ; they spoke much of the 
tyranny cuod oppression of the French 
armyf and acquainted the British of- 
iKcers with many anecdotes respecting 
the eoemvy which evinced his disre- 
gard of all feeling and principle. 

It was on the 15th of June that 
part of the army crossed the Ebro 
by the pass of Saint Marttno, and 
entered that district of Spain which 
Buonaparte had dared to annex for 
ever to France, the river Ebro, instead 
ef the Pyrenees* having been declared 
the boundary between the two couti- 
tries.<-ii>There is something very strik- 
ing in this pass. After a lon^ march» 
the army arrived at a tremen<K>us pre- 
cipice, extending right and left beyond 
the reach of sight, and which, risu^ a 
httkin front, preventsthedeep and wide 
diasm through which the nver flows 
from beine seen, till the traveller comet 
iasmediatdy upon it, when a prospect 
suddenly bursts upon the view of the 
richest and most interesting character, 
and greatly heightened by the con- 
trast with thtf region so recently tra- 
versed.«-The Ebro is here very nar- 


thouj^h deep ; aad meandera io 
a serpentme form thf»iwh ilnrtik 
valhes, while each side is fimhed hy 
stupendous chasns of momtains, part« 
ly rbcky and barrea, and partly cnki^ 
vated, and aflbrding walks tor ilie. 
sheep and goats, which brtMne upoa 
tbeirsteedestsariumts. Afewlea^pMa 
northward, near the source of the mery 
the loftiest rocks rise perpendseulariy 
above each other, formmg deep ratiaea 
and stupendous cataracts, and coaats» 
tutin^ altogether an assembhae of 
grand and sublime objects, prmUf 
not surpassed in any part of the j^obe«««* 
Two diviskms of the army crossed tkt 
Ebro at this place I where, on acconac 
of the difficulties to be overcoat, ia 
traversing the steep descents, ody one 
horse or mule could past at a tine. 
The progress of the artflkry and bag- 
gage wis in this manner gready im* 

peded ^Throiighom the wlwle of thia 

part of the Inarch die army seemed to 
traverse the land of romance ; ezten« 
sive ravines every where intersect thsa 
country; while the monntams near 
their barren and rocky heads to die 
clouds, attractinfr vast masses of snow^ 
which, when mdted by the sun, flow 
in torrents down the rocKS.-^This wild 
and romantic scenery is finely varied 
by the appearance of rich com fields^ 
vineyards, and ottve-groves, nmong 
which the Ebro irregularly winds. its 
majestic course through some of the 
most fertile parts ef Spain, and passing 
by Zaragoza, empties itself int6 the 
Mediterranean at a soudl distance be- 
bw Tortosa. 

The passage of the Ebro having been 
thus fortunately accomphsbed, the Bri- 
tish general directed his march on Vit« 
toria, which the French had made their 
central depot in the frontier provinces. 
To oppose his progress they hastily 
collected such troops as were in the 
neighbourhood, or could be thrown 
acrosi from Paacoibo.— >These troopa 

Digitized by 




advanced to meet the allies, bot al- 
though for. the moment superior in 
number thiey were quickly repulsed* 
The enemy* however, suU remamed at 
Pancorbo, and seemed determined ,to 
maintain themselves, if possible, in 
that stroi^ position. When they ob« 
served, however, that the allied army 
threatened their rear, they abandoned 
Pancorbo on the night of the 18th, 
and hastened to take up a position in 
front of Vittoria, which they effected 
on the following day. Lord Welling- 
ton spent the 20th in collecting his 
divisions which had been scatter^ by 
a hasty roavch over a rugged and diffi- 
cult country, and in reconnoitring the 
position, of the enemy* 

The enemy's army, commanded by 
Joseph Buonaparte, having Marshal 
Jounlan as the mator-genend, tud u- 
ken up a position m front of Vittoria, 
the left of which rested upon the 
heights which terminate at Puebla de 
Arumzon, and extended from thence 
across the valley of Gadora, in front 
of the village of Arunez. • They oc- 
cupied, with the nght of the centre, 
a height which commands the valley 
of Zadora ; their right was stationed 
near VktoriA, and destined to defend 
^e passages of the river Zadora. 
From these positions the British 
general detenaiaed to drive them ; 
and accordingly made the necessary 
preparations, for attacking them the 
i^ext day, (the 21st June) when he ob- 
taint-d a great and decisive victory in 
the ndghbuurhood of that city. 

The operations of the day commen- 
ced by is successful movement of 3ir 
R. Hill, to obtain possession of the 
heiffhu of Puebk, on. which th^ ene- 
my^s left rested; these heights the 
French had not occupied in great 
strength. Sir R. Hill detached on 
this service one brigade of the Spanish 
division under General MuriUo, the 
Other being employed in keepbg open 

the communication between his 
body, on the hieh road from Miranda 
to Vittoria, and the troops, deuched 
to the heights* The enemy, however, 
soon discovered the importance of the. 
heights, and reinforced his trocKks Uiens 
to such an extent, that Sir R« HiH wa» 
obliged to detach the 71*t Mgiment, 
and the light infantry battauoa of 
General Walker's brigade, uuder the 
dOmmand of Lieutenant Colonel Ca- 
dogan, and successivelv other troopa 
to the same point. Tne allies, how- 
ever, not only gained, but maintained, 
possession of these important heights 
throughout their operations, notwith- 
standing all the efforts of the enemy 
to retake them. The contest, at this 
point, however, was very severe, and 
the loss sustained con^derable. Ge- 
neral Murillo was wounded, but re- 
mained in the field ; Colonel Cadogan 
died of a wound which he received, 
** In him, ' said Lord Wellington, « the 
service lost an officer of great zeal 
and tried gallantry, who had already- 
acquired tne respect and regard of th^ 
whole profession, and of whom it might 
have been expected, that if he had liv- 
ed, h^ would have rendered the most 
important services to his country." 

Under cover of these heights. Sir 
R. Hill passed the Zadora at La 
Puebla, and the defile formed by the 
heights and the river Zadora. He 
attacked and ^ined possession of the 
yiUage of Sabijana de Alava, in front 
of the enemy's line, which the latter 
nuide repeated attempts to regain. The 
difficult nature of the country prevent* 
ed the communication from being form- 
ed between the different columns mov- 
ing to the attafck Jfrotn their station on 
the river Bayas, a^ as early an hour as 
Lord Wellington had expected ; and 
it was late before he knew that the 
column composed of the Sd and 7th 
divisions, under the command of the 
Earl of Dalhousici had arrived atth^ 

Digitized by 





apfMMnted for tliem. The 
aiul light divitioiit however^ 
the ZMora immediately after 
R. Hill bad posietoon of Sabi- 
jm de Alara; and almost as soon 
as these diTiaions had crossed, the co- 
bam under the Earl of Dalhoune ar- 
lifed at Mcndonza* and the third divi- 
aon under Sir T Picton crossed at 
the bridgje higher up, followed by the 
7th division. These four divisionsy 
fbnniDg the centre of the army, were 
destined to attack the heights on which 
the right oi the enemy s centre was 
placed, while Sir R. Hill moved for- 
ward &om Sabijana de Alava to attack 
the left The enemy, '^owertTf having 
weakened his lipe to strengthen his de- 
tachment in the hills, abandoned his 
position io the valley as soon as he saw 
the dispoeition of the allied army to at- 
tack it, and conunenced his retreat in 
good order towards Vittoria. The 
British troops continued to advance in 
admirable order, notwithstanding the 
difficulties of the ground* 

In the mean time Sir T. Graham, 
who commanded the left of the army, 
consistiog of the 1st and 5th divi- 
sions, — of Generals Pack and Brad- 
ford's brigades of in^try, and Ge- 
nerals Bock^s and Anson's cavalry, 
and who had moved on the 20th to 
Maigina, advanced thence on Vittoria, 
by the high road from that town to 
Mboa, lie had with falpa also the 
Spanish division under Colone) Longa. 
General Giron, who had been detach- 
ed to the lefty under a 4i9erent view 
of the state of a£BurSy bavins after- 
wards been recalled, had arrived on the 
Mh at Ordima, and marched thence 
on the morning of the ^Ist, so as to 
be io the field m readiness to support 
Sir Thomas Graham* if his support 
had been required. The enemy had a 
division of infantry, and some cavalry 
advanced on the great road from Vit- 
tma ^ Pilboay uieir right resting on 

some strong heights which cover the 
village of Gamarro Major. Both Gar 
marro and Abechinco were strongly 
occupied, as tetes-du-pont to the 
bridges over the Zadora at these 
places. Greneral Pack, with his Por« 
tuguese brigade, and Colonel Longat 
with the Spanish division, supported' 
by General Anson's brigade ot light 
dragoons, and the 5th division of in- 
£intry under the command of General 
Oswald, who was desired to take the 
command of all these troops, were di- 
rected to turn and g^n the heights* 
So soon as the heights were in posses- 
sion of the allies, the village of Ga- 
marro Major was most gallantly storm- 
ed and carried by General Robinson's 
brigade of the 5th division, which ad- 
vanced in columns of battalion, under 
a very heavy fire of artillery and mus- 
ketry, without firin? a shot* The 
enemy suffered severely at this point, 
and lost three pieces of cannon. The 
Lieutenant- General then proceeded to 
attack the village of Abechinco with 
the first division, by forming a strong 
battery against it ; under cover of the 
fire. Colonel Walkett's brigade ad- 
vanced to the attack, and carried the 
village, the light battalion having 
charjred and taken three guns and a 
howitzer on the bridge. 

During the operations at Abechinco, 
the enemy made the greatest efforts to 
repossess themselves of the village of 
Gamarro Major; but were galuntly 
repulsed by the troops of the 5th di- 
vision under General Oswald. The 
enemy had, however, on the heights on 
the left of the 2adora two divisions of 
infantry in reserve ; and it was impos- 
aible to cross by the bridges till the 
troops which had moved upon the 
enemy's centre and left had driven 
them through Vittoria. This serrice 
having been admirably peformed, the 
whole army co-operated in the puiw 

Digitized by 



The movements of tte troops un- 
*r Sir T. Gn^m, by which they 
obtained possession of Gamarro and 
Abechinco, intercepted the enemy's 
' jretreat by the high road to France* 
The fugitives were thus obliged to 
turn to the road towards Pamplanft ; 
but they were unable to hold any po« 
sition for a sufficient length of time 
to allow their baggage and artillery' to 
be drawn oflF. The whole of the ar- 
tillery therefore which had not beert 
captured by the troops in their attack 
of the successive positions taken up 
by the enemy, after their retreat fixmi 
their first position on Arunez, and on 
the Zadora, and all their ammunition 
and baggage, and evei^ thing they 
bad, were taken close to Vittoria. The 
enemy carried off with them one gun 
and one howitzer only. 

The army under Joseph Buonaparte 
consisted of the whole of the armies 
of the ^outh and of the ccntpe,*-»^f 
four divisions, and of all the cavalry 
of the army of Portugal-r-and of some 
troops of the army of the north. Oe- 
seral Toy's division of the army of 
Portugal was in the neighbourhood of 
Bilboa at this time ; and Clausel, who 
* commanded the army of the north, 
was near Logrono with one division 
of the army of Portugal, and another 
of the army of the north. The 6th 
division of the allied army, under 
|;eneral Pakenham, was likewise ab* 
tent, having been detained in Medina 
del Pomarror three days, to cover the 
inarch of the magazines and stores 
belonging to thefftllied army.— •« I can- 
not," says Lord WeUineton in his 
official dispatches, ^* extol too highly 
ihe good conduct of all the general 
officers and sddiers of the army in this 

^ When the short account of this bril- 
liant exploit, which has just been given 
almost in the very words of Lord 
Wellington, is consideredi we shall 

find every reason to- admire the talent 
which he displayed on this occtakniy' 
and to wonder n the strange erroia 
cbmmitted by th^ enemy. 

The first operation of the allies waa 
tb occupy the heights of La Fneblst 
ob vrfaich the enenry's left restet!|» 
In permitting this to be effected with 
Kttfe resistance, the French seemed to 
have committed a capital error, of 
which they immediately became sea* 
sible ; and they made vigorous efforts, 
and poured detachment after detach- 
ment, iu order to regain possession of 
them. Lord Wellington however sup* 
ported the corps posted there in such 
a manner, tharthey were still able to 
maintain their ground. — ^Then follow- 
ed the attack on both flanks of the 
enemy's centre. The French were 
not prepared for this attack. They 
had weakened their centre, for the 
purpose of nuking fruitless effbrta 
agamst the heights on the left ; and 
discovering at last that then' exer- 
tions to maintain their position would 
be unavailing, they abandoned it, and 
the whole of their centre and left re- 
treated upon Vittona* General Gra* 
ham, with the left of the allied army, 
was now carrying on those operationa 
which were to render victory deci- 
sive. The enemy had stationea a con- 
siderable force in advance of Gamarro ; 
and occupied several strongly forti- 
fied villages, by which the figh roads 
to Bilboa and Bayonne were defend- 
ed. General Graham succeeded in 
expelling the enemy from all tbeae 
positions, and driving him across the 
J!^adora. The bridges however being 
strongly guarded, he was himself un- 
able to gain the opposite bank, nnti] 
it had been cleared by the victorioas 
l^ght and centre* The left then cross- 
ed the river also, and joined in the 

The enemy was thus cut off fron 
the high road into Francci on wfaicl 

Digitized by 





A tfaeir w t u m g mmM Jor ntNstiiigi 

ftfte bjr ^ OKM^ iiflRvk-md drcii. 
imin Mate of J^uttFAtoo*, moo wUcb 

ID €Mcr tl^ liiavaaicikit. Tnrf '^^td 
tiM BO mMiisoF mikkg a ttMidfet 
toy Mejpoint Ibirt k»igtli<(f timt tof * 
ficMt to miMe tliem to ««Ty aMriy 
Adr «ctittiH7 and e^nfmttit9. Near 
Victoria* tbn'tffbre, the whole £ett fato 
dbektiida^Cliepurcoirt. Neveriras 
» a^Bfcy iio eompletel^ stripped. Ba^<» 
«|K,aitflkry) a«iiiitimtkyD»cai^>e<|iu- 
p^e--aH was ^aken i ^mit q wntitkt 
<£ ti^aiitt« tipev^ even tlii>M»vi d^wa 
the ^wdn- and edfteeted hj the pur« 
Htiog fMon«« The idhed armjy ia 
lUi tBoet lei^tiaMe plunder, to«md 
Mie soUa te^ard for the glonoaa tc^ 
tbmgh irhkh th^ had pmed. Of 
mt hmfMd, and fifty pieoet of eao* 
Doot the eaeaiy qtit&fid with Mm one 
guB and ooehmitaer only i e?en this 
•aKtanr gnn wai tfterwam eaptai^. 
The French tMuied Pamplnna, but 
wftfaont atoppmg at that fortress* and 
wTTOcd their retreat over the Pyrenees 
ko Fiance. Joseph Buoni^aite pass- 
ed duottgh SalnAierra» in his preci- 
{Aate flight hotck Vittoria, stripped 
of cycry ^in^» and exhibiting cveiy 
tynptom of ttaSr and confusion. 

The Spanish people hailed the ap- 
proadi or t^eir allies with the most 
extravagant demonstrations of joy, sa- 
tisfied, as they were irom the appear- 
Vice and atren^h of the aitey, that 
tile Ff^nch yoke. The inhabitants of 
Logrono, a fine town a few leagnes 
dhtant from Vittoria, resohred to lose 
ao time in proclaiming the change of 
wSUn, although it was humanely sug- 
Mted to them, that, in case of the 
FretKh letnrning, etery one would be 
oppressed and punished, who assisted 
ia the ceremony. They insisted, hoW- 
eter, upon proclaiming Ferdinand VII. 
tamuKliate^; and he was accordingly 

ithwtaied upon his throne by proxy* 
the cefemottT having been attended by 
the civH authorities of the place, who 
oandueted the representatire of ma« 
jesty to a stage erected for the occa- 
sion in the marlLet*place. In the 
evening the town was ifluminated and 
the rejoicings were general and en* 

The victory of Vittoria will be no 
less memorable for the importance of 
its eottseqisences, than for the courage 
and talent by which it was achieved.-— 
The extent of the enemy's loss in 
stores and artiOery was almost unex- 
ampled. This victory besides afforded 
the prospect of driving the enemy out 
of opaini-'-and what had by many 
been regarded as wild speculation was 
now become matter of confident hope. 
Even the invasion of France seemed 
to be a onestion of prudence merely 
with the British general. The British 
people, who had to long heard of the 
mtention of the enemy to invade this 
country — who had heard of their vain 
boast that they should* plant the 
French eagles on the Tower of Lon- 
don*-«were now assured that France 
might be invaded by a British army. 
It was yffhty probable that the same 
army which, by imperial mandate, 
was ordered into the sea at Lisbon^ 
might soon eater by land into Bonr- 
deaux ; and thus the prospects which 
opened to the country were such as 
amply confirmed the original wisdom 
of that policy which htA led her to 
enjM^'in l)ie cau^e of the peninsula. 

The grand ol^ect of this jpolicy waa 
to support the cause of Spain and 
Portugal^ and thus create a most im- 
portant (tiversion in favour of otherna- 
tions, who might be mclined to op- 
pose the encroachments, or throw off 
the yoke, of France ; and at the same 
time to afford to all nations a noble 
example of persevering and determined 
resistance. The wisdom of that policy 
Imd now been amply proved.— It was 

Digitized by 



universally known» that the effortsof 
the Sritish in Spain had encouraged 
Russia to resist. It was the request. 
of that power, that, as the best 
assistance which Britain could give 
her in her contest with France, the 
peninsular war should be Tigorously 
maintained. And what had been the 
result of this resistance ? Tht oppo- 
sition made to the power of the enemy 
in Spain and Portugal had produced 
the great efforts of Russia, and had 
enabled that country to resist with 
success ; for if the French had been 
prepared to advance into Russia at an 
earlier season, and in greater force, the 
issue might have been different. Ano* 
ther great object of this poHcy was to 
deprive the enemy of the resources of 
Spain and Portugal, which he might 
have employed to the subjugation of 
other countries* How mat the pro- 
gress which had now been made m 
effecting this object I Was it not much 
that the main French army, com- 
manded by the intrusive king in per- 
son, should have been signal^ defeat- 
ed with the loss of all its artillery, 
and every thing which constituted its 
strength ; and that this same king, 
(whose « sacred dynasty" was to be 
per^tual) had been compelled to fly 
m disgrace i In such a state of things, 
it was impossible to deny that a great 
stride had been made towards the ac- 
comphshment of the legitimate objects 
of the contest— the destruction of the 
enemy^s power in the peninsula ■ 
This victory, moreover, was of a nature 
as decisive as toy which had graced the 
military annals of England, ^ot only 
was the enemy defeated, and driven off 
the field, but he had lost all his artillery, 
his stores, his baggage, and, in shon, 
every thing which constituted the ma- 
teriel of an army. He had been com- 
pelled to abandon the strong military 
positions on the Ebro, whioi he had 
been fortifying for months, and where 
he reckoned upon making a stand, if 

forced to reliiiquish the other districts 
of Spain.^-The great talento of Lord 
Welhngton had scarcely been more 
displayed in the decisive battle of Vit- 
tona, than in the skill with which the. 
campaign was planned and the rapi- 
dity wiui which it had been conducted* 
Tlie enemy imagined that the fortifi- 
cations wmch he had constructed at 
Toro and other places, but particularly 
at Burgos* would retard the move- 
ments of the British troops, till he 
should be able, at least, to carry off 
his magazines in security. Such now- 
ever was the skill of Lord Welling- 
ton*a manoeuvres, and such the rapidity 
with which they were conducted, that 
all the plans of, the enemy were con- 
founded. No sooner had the alliea 
advanced into Spain, than the French 
hastily abandoned all their points of 
defence, and were constrained even 
to evacuate Burgos, on which they 
had expended so much bbour. They 
abandoned Pancorbo and Miranda on 
the Ebro with equal rapidity ; so that 
in less than a month after the allies en- 
tered S^»ain, the enemy beheld them 
threatenug his magazines at Vittoria, 
which he was compelled to defend at 
every hazard. Here the contest was 
never for a moment doubtful. The 
French seem to have fought with spirit 
OB two points only, the one on their 
right, where it was their object to 
cover or regain the main road to 
France by Bayonne, in which attempt 
they were completely repulsed by the 
troops under Sir T. Graham; the 
other on the left, where they endea^- 
voured in vain to retake the conunand- 
ing positions which were forced and 
maintained by the division of Sir Row- 
land Hill.-*tt is remarkable that near 
the spot where this great battle was 
fought, another victory was obtained 
in the proudest days of England's 
martial glory, when Edward th^ 
Black Prince defeated the usurper of 
the crown of Spain^ who op th^t 

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Chaf. 6.] 



was supported by French 
The merits of Lord Wellingtoii seem. 
eJwnr to transcend all praise. He had 
ken tried in a more extraordinary man- 
ser perhaps than any character^ in mi- 
liary or in cfTil life. He had at first 
liaaDed and condacted a sptem of 
defeace in the face of a hr supe- 
rior ferce» commanded by very able 
geBorals ; and had displayed the high- 
est qnalitiea of a consununate captain. 
& faad^ with unequalled coolness 
tad wilancey struggled with every 
dificiihjy and triumphed OTer every 
obstacle. Such events could have been 
acco mpl ished only by wonderful exer*- 
tioiis (^Takrar by himself and his army» 
sad by tbe more difficult exercise of |>er« 
sevenag endarance in the most trying 
atoations. But his lordship nowappear- 
td to hia countiy and to the world, as a 
man wbo had frequently distin^ished 
himself in every possible way through 
every stage of the contest — ^b^ his suH 
in condactnig sieges— -by his promp- 
titude in the application of sudden 

efforts — by his success in operations 
carried on in a country where the 
matest difficulties were experienced— 
by the ability with which ne had con- 
ducted himself even in retreating^— - 
and at last bya series of victories which 
had never been surpassed in splendour 
and importance. 

The prince, whom he served with 
so much glory, testified the sense which 
he entertamed of his high deserts in 
the most marked and gratifying man- 
ner. The staff of Marshal Jourdan 
having been taken at the battle of Vit- 
toria, and sent to the Prioce Regents 
his Royal Highness in return created 
Lord Wellington a field marshal of 
Great Britain. The frank and aflfec- 
tionate letter of the prince, so worthy 
of that illustrious personage, whicn 
accompanied this mark of the royal 
fieivour, must have greatly enhanced 
the gratification felt by Lord Wel- 
lington. The Spanish government al- 
so, as a proof of its gratitude for his 
eminent services to Spain, created him 
Dukeof Vittoria. 

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Hon and Pampluna %nvesUd.^Digreuim Oi tQ Oc Df/ecU of iie Britu 
jfrmjf tn cambcttng Siqrcs^ 

Uhb great victory wUch had been 
Atchtered bj the allied armies, waa 
foUawed up with that promptitude 
and decision which belopg to the 
character of their leader. Not a mo- 
ment was lost in pursuing the fugitive 
army— 4n harassing its retreat— in- 
tercepting the reinforcements which 
aougnt to relieve it— or investing the 
strong fortresses which now formed 
the last hold of the enemy upon Spain. 
Not a moment was left lum to recover 
from the consternation into which he 
had been thrown by the sudden and 
fiital blow so lately wfiicted. 

General Clausel, ignorant of the 
defeat of his countrymen, had ap- 
proached Vittoria, with part of the 
army of the north } but retired to- 
wards Logrono, after ascertaining the 
result of the action of the Slst. He 
remained in the neiflrhbouihood of that 
pkce on the 24i&f and till late on 
he 25th. 

Lomno, which Clausel thus oc- 
cupied, is a populous and fine town ; 
the streets are narrow, but the houses 
in general are good. The Ebro flows 
by the north side of the town; a 
handsome bridge, with a gateway in 
the centrei is thrown over tbt nver 

at the northern entrance. A fin 
walk nearly encircles the town, an 
a square on its southern side is we! 
planted with trees, and abounds wit! 
promenades formed in different direc 
tions. A large convent in ruins sop 
plies the pbce of barracks ; and at 
tached to it is a crescent forming 
convenient parade, the enclosed spac 
of which had been originally designe 
for buU'fiehts. The French, durin 
their stay m this town, constructed 
very spacions and convenient buildiuj 
for a military hospital, furnished wit 
a kitchen and laboratory, store-roon 
and surgery, which were afterward 
taken and occupied by bur troopi 
and proved a valuable acquisition to th 
alliedarmy. The town contains seven 
handsome churches; the collegia! 
church in particular is a very elegan 
building. During the five years th 
French occupied this town, they in 
gratiated themselves very much wit! 
the people. The arrival of the Britisl 
however, produced a great sensation. 
Lord Wellins^n conceived, that a 
General Clausel had lingered so lonj 
at this place, there might be som 
chance of intercepting his retreat ; am 
after sending the light troops toward 

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KoDcetvaUes, in pnrtuit of the army 
wider Joseph Boonaparte, he moTea 
against General Clauael a large force 
UMrards Todelay and another towards 
JLognmo. The French general, how- 
ever, made forced march^ followed bj 
General Mma. He crotaed the Ebro 
at Tudela ; but being informed that the 
Biiuih were upon the road, he immei^ 
^tdj recrossed, and marched towardf 
Zaragoaa* He did not attempt to make 
attaod at Zaragoza, but leaving a de^ 
tachment under General Paris, passed 
by a circuitotts rpute through Jaca 
«ciQsa the Pyrenees. Paris, on the 
approach of General Miaa, retreate4 
in the Bsane manner. Mina, hoWf 
cver, still followed the en^n^» «nd 
took from hMn two pieces of cannon, 
^odaome stores in Tudela, besides 300 
fiitoiiers ; Geneial Clinton also took 
iMHarfsym of five guns, which the ene- 
usf kft At Logrono.— »In the mean* 
time the troops under the command of 
Ueateoan^-General Sir R. Hill mo* 
vtd throwh the mountains to the head 
of the Bidaswn, the eneihy having on 
|)bpt aide retired f nto France. 

lyiulft tijese evexits took place on 
ibe ligl^ l^f t^e army. General Gnu 
ham with the left wing, com^s^ 
liifHf oi P^rtHgvtese and Spaniard§, 
^M^f-m^mkCtive. The Frex^ih ev^cu- 
finA aU tll^r (^^of in Biscay, ex^ 
imS^atoip^ »d S^, l^ebasftian; and 
^a^ng tl^ir fffurisonsto the division 
$[ the army of the north, which was 
0^ 6itt>o«f t>ev assembled a force more 
MMd4sr9d>le. than had at first been sup- 
|lOaed» Thdr first effort was made at 
^ uiDCtion pf the road from Pamp- 
laaawith that from Ba^onne; they 
lUiteij tbcsssclvef on a hill command- 
pg tfceee two roads, and determined 
t0 la^intaif^ it. A vigorous attack, 
|i9fro^er« ponunanded by Lieutenaat- 
S^tf^mA Wilfiams, quickly disloc^g^ 
ih/tm* The f^emy tnen retreated into 
Toloaa, a towu sUghtly fortified, and 
Vj Wri(»dM>g the gates, and occupy- 

ing convents and large bnildiogs in the 
vicinity, they succeeded in rendering 
it a strong position. It was aecessarj 
to bring toward a nine-pounder in 
order to burst open one pf the gates. 
The allies made their way into the 
town ; but it was already dark | and 
the ^troops of the different natiofii 
could scarcely be distinguished^ The 
perplexity thus occasio^ enabled the 
French to escape with smaller loas 
than they must otherwise h^ve sus- 
tained— <-The enemy made his last 
stand on the Bidassoa, which forms the 
boundary, in this direction, between 
Spain and Frao4e. He was drivai 
across it by a brigade of the army of 
Gallicia ander the command of Geo^ 
ral Castanoi, and the bridge over tli^ 
river was destroyed. Port Passagp(% 
a harbour of considerable importanee 
at the mouth of the Bidassoa, was then 
taken by Longa, and its garrison of 
150 men made prisoners. 

The^ town oi Passages is very sii»> 
gularly constructed, and is as dita^free- 
able as it is peculiar. The sea flowt 
through: a defile of mountams, and 
forms a navigable river to a conaiideraF- 
ble extent inland, affording a very 
safe and convenient harbour for ship- 
ping, with which it is exoe^diagty 
crowded. This circumstance ia^ia^ 
an interest to the place, which joiiH^ 
to the beauty of the surrounding cjhhi- 
try^ compensates, m some degree, for 
the extreme]wretcbedness of its accotfi- 
modation. — ^The town consists of twfv 
exceedinglv narrow and dirty streets^ 
one of which Ues on one side of the 
river, and the other on theoi^>osite 
bank, the communication between 
the two being carried on solely hf 
means of boats« 

When the enemy retired acrofs the 
Ebro, previously to the bi^tle of Vit- 
toria, they left a garrison of aboft 
600 men in the castle of Paocorbo, 
by which they commanded the gre^t 
commuoication from Vittoria to MCir- 

Digitized by 



f08. Lord Wellington therefore or- 
ered the Conde de Abisbal, on hit 
march to Miranda, to make himself 
master of the town and lower works, 
and to blockade the place. The 
Spanish general accordingly carried 
the town and lower fort by assault on 
the 28th of July, after which the gar- 
rison surrendenrd by capitulation. — 
The decision and dispatch with which 
this place was subdued were highly 
creditable to the officers and troops 

The Spanish cortes, on receiving in- 
telligence of the great success of Lord 
WeUington, voted thanks to the field 
marshal and his brave army by ac 
clamation.-i'They sent a deputation 
to the British ambassador to compli- 
•jnent him ; and came to a unanimous 
vote that a territorial property should 
be conferred upon their grandee, the 
Duke of Ciudad Rodrieo ; and that 
the title of possession should contain 
these words: ** Jn the name (f the 
Spanish nation^ in testimony of its most 
ttncere gratitude.** 

The allied armies meanwhile pur- 
lued their victorious career Though 
the enemy had withrawn the whole of 
their ri^ht and left wings into France, 
three divisioiis of the centre, under 
General Gazan, remained in the valley 
of Bustan, of which they seemed de- 
termined to keep possession, as it is 
very fertile and fuD of strong posi- 
tions. Upon the 4th, 5th, and 7th of 
July, however, they were successively 
dislodged from all their posts, by two 
briga^ of British and two of Portu- 
guese infantry, under Sir R. Hill ; and 
compelled to retreat into France. The 
allies lost eight men killed, and 119 
wounded.— These affairs, by which 
Sir R. HiU dislodged the enemy from 
this fine valley and drove him into 
France, were extremely brilliant. 

Before the British army could be 
conveniently employed in more deci- 
•ive operitioos against the enemy, it 

bedame necessary to reduce the fof 
tresses of St Sebastian and Pamplu 
na, two of the strongest in Spain. A 
these were the last sieges undertake] 
by the British troops in the f^nia 
aula — as the reduction of both place 
required from the British army eflfort 
almost incredible,— and as it seems to l> 
the general opinion among officers o 
science and experience, that considera 
ble improvements may yet be accom 
plished in this branch of the serviee 
a brief review of the opinions enter 
tained on this subject may not be un 
interesting. We shall prentise a shor 
account of the situation and appear 
ance of St Sebastian and Pampluna. 
St Sebastian, which once iotmti 
one o the finest cities of Spain, anc 
which still bears marks of its forme 
splendour, is almost a league from Pat 
sages The houses appear to hav< 
been in gener/1 large and handsome 
and the streets, for the most part» ar( 
uniform and spacious. The town i 
built on a peninsula, running nearij 
east and west, the northern side beini 
washed by the river Ununea, tb 
southern by the sea. The front de 
fences, which crossed the isthmus %ti 
wards the land, when the place w^ 
besieged, consisted of a double line oi 
works, with the usual countertcartf 
covered way, and glacis, but the worki 
running lengthways of the peninsiilj 
were composed or only a single line 
and, trusting to the water in front t( 
render them inaccessible, they wen 
built without any cover. Tfe nor 
them line is quite exposed from th< 
top to the bottom, to a range of hilh 
on the right bank of the river, at thi 
distance of six or seven hmidred yardi 
from it. The neglect to cover thes* 
walls appears unaccountable, as the 
Urumea for some hours before and 
after low water is fordable, and the 
tide recedes so much, that for the same 
period there is a considerable space 
left dry along the left bank of the 

Digitized by 


CkAF. 91] 



i)lFer» hy whtdi troops can march to 
the foot of the wall. — Marshal Ber- 
wick when he attacked St Sebastian 
in 1701- aware of this circumstancey 
^ew np batteries on those hills to 
breach ue feown-widly pushed an ap* 
proach along the isthmus, asd establish 
ed himself on the covered- way of the 
had front. So soon as the breach was 
pncticable» the gOTernor capitulated 
tar the town* and the Duke obliged 
ioMD^ with the garrison* to retire into , 
tile castle. 

Pamplunais represented by some tra- 
-veSen as the finest town in Spain. Its 
▼idmty to France* and the sea ports 
npoD tiie coast of Biscay* which* from 
toe exc^ence of the roads» are easy of 
access even to carriages* combined with 
a ready communication to the metro- 
polis, and the fine country of Catalo- 
nia, bestow on Pamplona many advan- 
tages.^— The town itself is spacious, 
aiiy^ and handsome ; the streets are 
wxkr than those of other Spanish 
towns, and the houses are generally 
more commodious* The approach to 
the city is noble ; and* as a completely 
fintified place* Pamplunahas a very im 
podng appearance. Its elegant and 
kifty spires are seen from a great drs- 
tattce, ami akc^ether, with its walls* 
butionst and turrets* it has an ap- 
acoance of strength and grandeur. 
The northern part of the town is much 
debated, and the Ebro is seen ap- 
proaching frsm a considerable dis- 
tance. A handsome bridge is thrown 
ever the river* which conducts the 
traveller to the city through a spa 
ckms gateway. The suburbs are 
scattered over the banks of the river* 
hot the French have done them cod- 
ndeiable injury. Within the town 
they practised their usual system of 
plisB<Kr and spoliation. — In the cen- 
tre of Pamplona there id a large mar- 
ket place ; a handsome municipal- 
house^ adjacent to which is a very 
apttciotis square with piazzas; con- 


vents* and othercharitableendowments, 
some of which are very handsome 
and costly, meet the eye in all direc- 
tions. The collegiate church is a 
large and handsome building, erected 
on the summit of a hill* at the northern 
extremity of the town* and in the cen- 
tre of a paved square. It appears to 
be very ancient ; is of Gothic architec- 
ture* and decorated* like many other 
Gothic edifice^, bv various figures in 
the most uncouth attitudes. The 
front has been modernized* and is 
very finely ornamented. A royal pa- 
lace is still shewn, more remarkable 
for its antiquity than its beauty. 
The citadel occupies a large space of 
ground, and consists chiefly of a cres- 
cent of small houses* where the artifi- 
cers resiae ; it has no tower* or any 
thing indicating a castellated appear- 
ance, above its wall*. A walk round 
the ramparts commands many fine 
views of the surrounding country. The 
fortifications are unusually strong, and 
doubly ditched. Interposed between 
these works and the city* on one side^ 
is a large square* ornamented with fine 
poplar trees* wluch forms a parade for 
the exercise of the troops. The town, 
though still populous, has been much 
reduced of late years ; and its present 
inhabitants have been greatly impove- 
rished by their late connection witn the 

Such were the places which the Bri- 
tish army was now ordered to reduce, 
strengthened as they were by all the % 
resources of French ingenuity* and de- 
fended by a chosen band of French 

The most inattentive observer of the 
campaigns in the peninsula, cannot but 
have remarked, tnat, in the field, on 
every occasion, the British have shewn 
a decided superiority over the French, 
which neither bequality of numbers, 
strength of position, nor other circum- 
stance* has been able to counterbalance : 
Yet in erery instance whsn a fortified 

Digitized by 




place hasbcerf attacked, this superio- 
rity has been lost, and the enemy has 
either successfully resisted, or the place 
has beed gained at a price above its 
current v^ue. So constant and so 
marked a difference in the result of 
contentions between the same troops 
when fighting in the field and at a siege, 
cannot be the effect of chance^ but 
must be explained by reference to some 
constantly operating cause. 

As the corps of artillery and engi- 
neers are the most prominent actors at 
a siege, it is natural to conjecture that 
one or other of them is deficient in a 
knowledge of its duty, but the former 
is universally and deservedly consider- 
ed as the best in Europe ; and Lord 
Wdlington's express declaration, that 
the attacks were carried on by the en- 
gineers with the greatest ability, and 
that by their conduct on such occasions 
they had augmented their claims to his 
approbation, must for ever remove any 
suspicion of want of talent or zeal in 
this department^ It becomes there- 
fore an object of considerable interest 
to ascertam why so skilful a general, 
with the bravest troops in the world — 
with excellent artillery^— and with en- 
gineers whose conduct has always met 
with his approbation, should not have 
carried on ms sieges with the same cer- 
tainty of success, and the same incon- 
siderable loss, which have attended the 
operations of the ordinary generals of 
the French army. 

Whatever opinions the English may 
entertain lagainst fortifying their own 
towns, no doubt can exist, after the 
experience of so many costly sieges, as 
to the advantaee occasionally to be de- 
rived from havmg theoower to reduce 
those of an enemy. Within these few 
years the judgment of men in all coun- 
tries on the value of fortresses, has un- 
dergone great changes. The over- 
whelming torrent of the French armies, 
supported by opinion, bore down every 
thing ; the best fortified towns yielded 
to it equally with the open mage ; 

not one fortress opposed a due resist- 
ance, to uphold its ancient reputationy 
and all belief in their use was stagger- 
ed. That torrent is happily now spent ; 
the operations of war are fast returning 
into their former channels, and fortress- 
es are resuming their due rank in ita 
combinations. No longer do we hear 
of towns surrendered on a first sum- 
mons, or under the terrors of a bom- 
bardment ; no longer are fortified 
places considered as useless drains on 
an army. In the hands of the Frenck 
they have suddenly assumed a new 
character^ and the most insignificant 
post makes a protracted resistance — a 
resistance which to many appears un- 
accountable. To profit by this feeling, 
the French government have, by popu- 
lar treatises, and other arts, attempted 
but too successfully to impose a belief 
that with them the defence has received 
some great improvement ; and the ene- 
mies of France, by a strange perversc- 
ness of judgment, at the very moment 
when they nad to reconauer those pos- 
sessions which they readily surrender- 
ed, were, without due examination, 
imbibing an opinion of their impregna- 
bility. It is ot considerable importance 
tp those who are likely to act only as 
assailants, that such ideas should be 
discouraged, since they appear to be 
founded in error. The only improve- 
ment which the science of defence ap- 
peiars to have received consists in the 
negative advantage; accruing to it from 
the disuse, of late vears, of that sdence 
of attack, and of those powerful means 
which formerly gave to the besiegers 
so irresistible a superiority. The best 
method to restore its former character 
to t^e science of attack, would be, to 
revive the knowledge of the art amongst 
military men generally, when its great 
powers would become apparent. liad 
this been done at an earlier period, 
the French would have derived no more 
than a lust value from their numerous 
fortified places. 
In the Finnish language there exists 

Digitized by 


Chap* 9.] 



not a single original treatise on sieges ; 
all our knowledj^e of the subject is at- 
tained from foreign writers, and their 
maxims, whether well or ill adapted to 
the physical and moral powers of our 
men, are implicitly followed. Many 
^tish officers, at different periods, 
acquire much knowledge and experi- 
ence in the art ; but, as they never 
commuDicate that knowledge to the 
pnWc, it dies with them ; and each 
succeeding fireneration is obliged to 
acquire its sKill without a guioe, and 
at the expence of much blood and trea^ 
sm-e to the country. Thus it happens 
that there is no general understanding 
on the aubject^ and no acknowledged 
authority, as in other arts, on which to 
rdy. Hence also there are no rules 
nor regulations for^the conduct of an 
Engiisn siege : JSach officer, accord- 
iBg to bit abilitiea and experience, re- 
gubtea the attack ; no note nor memo- 
nuldtlm of any former operation is erer 
produced, to direct and guide the as* 
sailant in future ; the errors and the* 
skin disptoyed in all prior attacks are 
alike buried in oblivion, and each. sue*' 
oeeding siege is conducted without ex- 

Besides the general impression al-: 
ready mentioned, that the science of 
defence has of late received some great 
improvement, the events of the sieges 
in Spain have given rise to opinions 
peculiar to the British army. Among 
these may be enumerated the 
tkrns that great loss and uncertainty 
are inherent to the operations of a 
siege ; that the French possess supe- 
rior knowledge in the art of defence i 
that they fight better behind walls 
than in tne field ; and that the En^sh 
are not fitted for such undertakings. 
Tliese notions, however, seem to be 
totaDy unfounded ; and the defects of 
our military establishments alone, not 
an inferiority in the art, gave rise to 
the occurreaces on which they are 


The happy insular situation of Great 
Britain, and her maritime superiority,' 
have diverted the attention of British 
officers from this art, and the service 
connected with it. The expeditionary 
mode of war&re adopted during the 
greater part of the last century, con- 
tributed greatly to the same result ; 
and so much has the establishment for 
sieges been overlooked, that the corps 
of officers who are kept in pay for the 
professed object of attacking and de- 
fending fortresses, have always been 
without the necessary assistance to ren- 
der theq:i efficient. 

If we look back to the commence- 
ment of the war in IT 98, we shall find 
the infantry, cavalry, and artillery, all 
equally inferior ) but in the couiseof 
service, theiir several defects were ob*^ ■ 
served and remedied, and those three 
arms are now superior to any in-jociat* 
ance. It happened that in the course 
of fifteen years of war, the Edgliih 
never attempted any great siege, and 
the deficiencies of the establishments . 
for that service,, were not so apparent ; 
nothing was done, therefore^ t6 im- 
]»Dve them ; and at the coomience- . 
ment of the casipaigns in the peninsu- 
la, the engineer department was the 
same as it had been previously to. the 
war. The first, sieges undertaken in . 
Spain shewed its numerous deficienri 
des i some of which have since been 
remedied, but many improvements are 
yet reouired^ to render that arm equ- 
ally efficient with the others. Such 
perfection, however, it may be hoped, 
will' idtimately be. attained, from the. 
exertions which have been made to ef- 
fect it. 

The superior coura^ of the officers 
and soldiers of the British army is too 
well known and established ever to be* 
questioned. Their feats in arms are 
too numerous and brilliant ever to be 
forgotten ; and their fame is to^ firm- 
ly fixed for them to wish that their 
failures should be concealed. 

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The rtdical fauk of the neges in 
Spain hat arisen from our not carrying 
the works sufficiency forward to close 
with the enemy ; and a little reflection 
will prove that every miscarriage* and 
sdl the losses sustained, may be traced 
to this source. To rectify this defect* 
therefore, and ta introduce a doaer 
mode of attack, is die object which 
claims the chief attention. Should we 
be prepared at all future neffes to gain 
the gixHind inch by inch, till securely 
posted qn the summit of the rampartSt 
the hitherto constant evils attendant on 
such operations would be remedied, 
and the just rules of attack would be 
•crupulously observed. 

Tne system of making a beach 
from a ^sUnce, and of hazarding all 
on the vabur of the troops, rather than 
insuring success by then- labour, kaa 
become habitual to the British army. 
They have in thia way generally suc- 
ceeded b their coloaiaf wars, where 
the nature of the cKmate justified such, 
a mode of attack, delay being often 
more fiital than repulse. The extreme 
haoard of such a proceeding is not so 
s^parenty therefore, to the English as 
to the people of other nations.-*The 
authority of history, as well as the evi- 
dence ot recent events, is against such 
a mode of attack ; and it has been en* 
tirely abandoned by the great continen- 
tal powers in their operations against 
French garrisons since the modined or* 
donnance of 1705^ (commandhig go- 
Temors to sUnd at least one assault in 
the body of the place,} has been enfor- 
oed ; before that penod the practice 
was pretty general, and, when resisted, 
was usually attended with the same re- 
sults as at present. 

In the 16th, and beginning of the 
17th centuries, the art of disposmg the 
different works of a fortress, so as to 
cover each other, and to be covered by 
the glacis from the view of an enemy, 
was either unknown or disregarded* 
Artillery was then little UKd^ on ac- 

count of the great expencc and di&dul- 
ty of bringing it up. The chief care 
of those vi^ fertined towns, was, by 
height of situation, and lofty walls, to 
render them secure from escalade ; and 
places buik prior to that period are 
invariably of such construction. The 
simplicity of the places to be attacked 
gave the same character to the opera- 
tion itself; and every thing was then 
effected by desperate courae e, without 
the aid of science $ but when the use 
of artillery became more common, such 
exposed walls could no longer oppose 
a moderate resistance, even to the im- 
perfect mode of attack which was then 
practised $ and to restore an equality 
to the defence, it became necessary to 
screen the garrison from distant fire. 
The attempt was scarce^ made, when 
the genius of one mai^ ( Vauban,) per- 
fected a new sptem, which gave to the 
defence of towns a sdperiority over the 
attack, by rendering them unassailable 
by all op^ efforts, such as were at that 
time practised. 

Unfortunately for mankind, Vau- 
ban afterwards served a prince bent on 
conquest ; and, turning his great ta- 
lents to the aid of his master, ne> with 
an unhappy facility, in a fow cam- 
paigns, perfected a covered mode of 
attack, by a combination of science 
and labour, which rendered easy to 
the steady advances of a few brave men, 
the reduction of places capable of de- 
{jins for ever the open violence of mul- 
titu&s. Since that period all the con- 
tinental powers have made such men 
an integral part of their armies;, and- 
thejr have thus rendered the success of 
their attacks on strong places nearly 
certain. England, however, remained 
alone for one hundred years without 
imitating her rivals ; and hence it is 
that in the 19th century, her ffenerak 
were driven to the same hazardous ex« 
pedients for reducine places as those of 
Philip the Second, in the 16th. Had 
a British army, under these circura^ 

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ttimees, b^en opposed to a phct Mfy 
c o ve r e d , iiccormng to the modern sys- 
tern, all its efforts to redtfce it woakl 
Ikave been unayadingy add ho p^Hod 6f 
tfinie» not sacii^e of meni ^ould hate 
eiected tke ol^ect. 

Since the introdbctidn of science, 
diere ie, perhap, no mifita^ undei-- 
taking ao cettam in its results, as tke 
ledQctioB of a fortified place ; every 
ether military event is in some degree 
governed by chance, btit the resuft 6f 
a acge is matter of sure IcdculiEition. 
The art of attack hiifs be«n iltodertd 00 
mach superior to that of defence, that 
DO artificial work caa resist beyond a 
limited time ; bravery and conduct will 
serve a little to retard its full, but can* 
not long prevent it. Shells, and an 
enfilade fire ^ ricochet^ are irresistible 
-—the timid and the brave alike fall be- 
fore them. Such certainty in a si^re, 
however, depends on an exact adhe- 
rence to the rules of art ; and when 
these are departed from, all becomes 
confusion ; — time, life, and success, are 
then put to imminent hazard. To this 
cruel alternative it is apparent that 
IfOrd Wellington has been driven in 
all his attacks, from the want of means 
aad of a due establishment to carry 
mto effect his own more Just ideas. 

It is time^ therefore, that we should 
iBature our infant establishments ;— 
that our officers should study the theo- 
ry of attack, and our soldiers be in- 
stmcted in the details. If a period oU 
yauoc is duly improved, we shall attain 
BQch perfection, that, in the next con- 
testy there will be no plea for a recur- 
mice to former modes of attack ;— > 
wherever adequate armaments can act, 
knowledge wnl be united to physical 
power ; and sieges being carried on by 
the British aumy with science equal to 
its bravery, they will be rendered cer- 
tain, simple, and comparatively blood- 

It must ever be recollected, that no 
exertioii of science or bravery will be 

availing unless seconded by powerful 
means in artillery, stores, and materiiJa. 
The want of these, parttcularly of the 
latter, deeply injured the operati<]ai8 in 
Spaiik ; atid was, without doubt, a prin- 
cipal caus^ of their uncertainty. But, 
as on most occasions the siege establish- 
ments, even in thte peninsula, were 
uneqrhd to a full use of the other 
means, if provided, such deficiencies 
have not been much regarded. Nothing 
is more certa^ than that the reduc- 
tion of a town nrast be paid for ei- 
ther in materials or men, as the one or 
the othet shall be made the chi(?f sacri- 
fice. It must be remembered, however, 
that every saving in the former has the 
double inconvenience of an additional 
expenditure of time as well as of life* 
In Spain, a combitiation of unfavour- 
able circumstances occasioned a great 
sacrifice of life at the sieges ; an ex- 
hausted country without carriage-— an 
engineer's department without a driver, 
horse, or wagg^ belonnng to it— a 
superior enemy in the fieB, and a con- 
sequent necessity for secrecy-— all these 
circumstances combined to prevent the 
British army from receiving due sup- 
plies. It is improbable, however, that 
such complicated difficulties should 
again occur ;— and as numy of them 
may be removed by care and attention 
in the outset, the sieges which may in 
future be undertaken by our armies 
will be brought to a speedy and more 
prosperous conclusion. 

As many of the impediments to suc- 
cess in Spain were either local, or such 
as may easily be avoided in future, to 
acquire immediate efficiency in carrying 
on sieges, nothing remains but to obvi- 
ate the imperfecuon of our mode of at- 
tack. We must learn to aid bravery 
by science, and to gain by labour what- 
ever is denied to force. It is satisfac- 
tory to observe how sheht the changes 
are which will be required to place the 
army on an elGficient footing. When 
this shall be effected^ and the close 

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mode of attack puraued^ we maj hail 
the commencement of a siege as the 
sure forerunner of a national triumph* 
To carry on a siege we possess advan* 

. taffes hr greater than the French, and 
other continental nations ;-— our sol- 

. diers are stronger and braver than 
theirs,*-our instruments of attack are 
better,— audio quantity of ammunition, 
stores, artillery, Sec how can they 
come into competition with us, who 
can convey them to their destination 
by water, with little trouble or ex- 
pence, whilst among our enemies every 
thin^ must move by a tedious and ex- 
pensive land*carriage, from arsenals in 

the interior I It is not, therefore, too 
much to conclude, that, so sqon as the 
superior courage and force of our men 
shall be seconded by the superior meana 
we have it usuaUy in our power to sup- 
ply, and when, by scientific direction* 
as much benefit shall be drawn from 
their labour as from their bravery, the 
British soldiers must prove superior to 
any in Europe, in besieging a fortress $ 
but so long as the present imperfect 
mode of attack continues to be toUow- 
ed, any covered work will seriously 
impede it, and may prove an msur- 
mountable obstacle to the best and 
bravest efforU of the assailants. 

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Chap. 10] 




Operations of the Anglo-SidUan Army in the East of Spain. -^Sir John Mnr* 
ray undertakes the Siege ofTarragona^ tvhich he afterwards raises abruptly. 
— Lord William Bentinck takes the Command of the Army. 

From the brilliant career of the allies 
in the north of Spaini we must now 
turn to the operations which took 
^ace on the eastern coast of the pe- 
nioiuJa. In Catalonia and Valencia 
the French still maintained a venr large 
Ibrcey and were in possession of nume- 
rous fortresses, some of which ranked 
anoDg the strongest in Europe. Sn* 
chcty who commuidedthis forcci occu- 
]»ed a pootion in firont of Valencia, at 
St PhilUDpe, on the line of the Xucar. 
—The allies, on the other hand, had 
collected a irery considerable force in 
sad near Alicant. Several British and 
native regiments had been withdrawn 
from Sicity ; anda large force collected 
from the population oi the neighbour* 
bg provinces had been omnized in« 
t£ Balearic islands, under British offi- 
cers.— This corps could act in combi- 
nation with the second Spanish army 
nnder General Elio, which was drawn 
1^ abng the frontiers of Murda. The 
troops remained, however, in a state 
of inaction till the middle of April,, 
when the Anglo-Sicilian army, un- 
der Sir John Morraj, left Alicant, 
and advanced to Castella: General 
Eho^ at the same time^ took post at 

Yesla and Villena. It appears, how- 
ever, that these different corps had not 
been in a state of proper combination ; 
and Suchet soon discovered the advan- 
tage which might be derived from this 
oversight. Collecting his whole dis- 
poseable force, he, on the 11th of 
April, attacked the corps of General 
£ho, unsupported by the rest of the 
allies ; drove it, with some loss, from 
Yesla, and, havine invested the castle 
of Villena, compefled that place, with 
its garrison of 1000 men, to surrender 
next day at discretion. Having thus 
succeeded against the Spanish arm^, 
he proceeded to the attack of the Bri- 
tish positions; and, on the 12th, at 
noon assailed their advanced posts at 
Biar. The resistance was vigorously 
maintained against superior force for 
five hours ; and the troops at length 
fell back upon the main body, only in 
compliance with the orders of Genera! 
Murray. Suchet, however, not dis- 
heartened by this reception, proceeded, 
on the foDowinff day, to attack the 
position at Castella, where the British 
were concentrated. At noon on the 
13th, after having displayed all his ca- 
valry, he advanced a corps of 2000 in- ■ 

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fantry, with the view of forcing the 
left of the lioe» which the vanguard of 
General Whittineham covered ; but 
these troops^ and the English whom he 
encountered at this points received the 
attack with the utmost steadiness ; they 
allowed the enemy to approach to the 
very point of their bayonets, and then 
charged them, breaking the French 
column ; and killing, wounding, or 
making prisoners those who composed 
it. Suchet, having observed the result 
of his first attempt, was obliged to 
change his plans— to reduce his opera- 
lions to a series of movements, and fi- 
nally to put himself in retreat. Gene- 
ral Murray immediately ordered nine 
battalions of infontry, and 1000 caval- 
ry, with ten pieces of artillery, to pur- 
sue ; this occasiuned great ^ods to the 
enemy's columns, which continued to 
retire, beaten and fatigued. As the 
auperiority of the French in cavalry, 
however, gave them great advantages 
for proceeding in the direct line. Ge- 
neral Murray commenced a flank move- 
ment by Akov, in hopes of reaching 
the entrenched camp at St Felipe, be- 
fore the enemy's arrival; but the 
French having reached Alcov only a 
quarter of an hour before the allies, 
this plan was frustrated. Sir John 
lk{[urrav then returned to his position. 
, In this action, Suchet made his first 
experiment of the valour of British 
troops ; and in contending with them^ 
was for the first time repulsed and 
overthrown. The allied army, how- 
ever, did not make any attempt to.fol- 
low up its success. llie advance from 
Alicant indeed uppears to have been 
m^de less with the view of pushing 
forward in that direction, than for the 
purpose of seconding the grand opera- 
tion in the north of Spain, and of pre- 
venting Suchet from detaching any of 
his force to the assistance of Joseph 
Buonaparte* When Lord Wellington) 
however, began to move from Sala- 
maaca^'Sir John Murray, under his di- 

rection, was called upon to ezecote wl 
new plan of operations. 

As the operations of Sir John Mur« 
ray were not attended with the success 
which had been expected— -as the ho- 
nour of this officer, and, it may be 
thought, that of the army under his 
command, were involved in these trans* 
actions— and as every particular con- 
nected with them received the utmost. 
publicity, in the course of the investi- 
gation which was ordered into the 
conduct of the general, we shall end^« 
vour to give a distinct and impartial 
account of the whole proceedings. 

It has tth«ady been stated, that be- 
fore the expedition to Tarragona^ was 
undertaken, the French army occupied 
so strong a position on the line of the 
Xucar, that it was«ot judged expedi- 
ent for the allied armies, composed 
as they were, to run the risk of a di- 
rect attack on its front, before weak- 
ening its numbers by a movement oa 
its flank or rear. To accomplish this 
object, two plans offered th^nselves to 
the commander of the forces i th^ one 
comprehended a movement of a consi- 
derable portion of the allied amues by 
Requena and Utiel, and by Tortosa 
and Lerida, to co-operate oa the right 
flank of the French, and towards the 
rear of their position. The other con- 
templated a naval expedition, by means 
of which a considerable force might be 
landed at sobm distance in the rear of 
the enemy's left flank. Theexccutioa 
of the first plan must have been so dif- 
ficult and circuitous, and the restik so 
doubtful, that the naval expedition, if 
practicable, was very much to be pre- 
ferred. In pursuance of this object, 
detiukd instructions, which bear date 
14th April, 181S, were accordingly 
given by the Duke of Wellington to 
Lieutenant-General Sir John Murray* 
By these instructions, if a body of men, 
to the number of 10,000 at the least, 
and of the description soedfied, oould 
be embarked on. the nam expeditioB, it 

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wat Effected to take phoe ; and^ in tbfti 
eicDt* the foHowing objecuof the ex- 
pedition were pointed oat : lat» To 
obtain posaeasioD of the open part of 
tKe kingdc^ of Vakncia. 2dly, To 
tccttie an estaUialMDeat on t^e 8ea^ 
ooait* nortli of the £bvo» so aa to 

J 91 a conunanicatbn with t^ ann^ 
Catalonk ; and eventually, in the 
Sd pkMre^ To oblige the eaemy to ie« 
tiie from the Lower Ebro i the order 
of the 2d and 8dob}ect8 having been 
kft to Sir John Murray's diacretion^ 
— T%e inatmctiona proceed to atate» 
that» with a force of lOgOOO men, the 
lat and £d objects anight be with great 
advantage coBrf>ined ; or» in other 
words* that die attempt to secure ^he 
ealabliahiPfnt on the coast* by a brisk 
attack upon Tarragona, would aeoea^ 
aarily induce Marshal Suchet to weak'* 
en lua force in Valencia, and enable the 
Spamk genecalf to take ^posaecsioa 
oi a great part, if sot the whole, of 
the open oosntry in that kiiwdonu 

It was further renaarkei^ in the 
nanwandnin of initnictions, that the 
possession of Tamgooa must involve 
a question of time and means ; and 
that, if Sodiet, notwithstanding the 
junction of the troops of the first 
Spanish army with tnose under- Sir 
John Murray, shouU be so strong in 
Catalonia as to oblige the British ^« 
neral to raise the siege, his first aim 
wooldy at least, have been gained 
without difficulty, and the return of 
Sir J^m Murray^s corps into the kine- 
doitt of Valencia would secure the sicU 
vantage thus acquired. But if, on 
the other hand^ Sir John Murray 
should succeed in taking Tarragona, 
the firat and second objects, pointed 
oat by his bstructions, wonfd have 
been secured, and a foundation bid for 
the attainment of the remaining object 
pointed out bv the coaomander-in- 
duef. General Murray was also dU 
rectedy in case of raising the siege, or 
at all ctentSy on bis raturning to the 

kmgdom of Valencia* l» land as tuf 
north as might be in his power, in Oi^ 
der immediately to join the r%ht of 
tJK Spanish annies« 

It was the object of Lord Welfing* 
tOB^ therefore, that a sudden and vigor* 
•OS attack should he made on Tarra* 
goda ; by means of which; Socket, in 
order to aflord the requisite attistnnce 
to the garrisoo, would he compelled m 
to wedcen hn amy on the Xucart 
aa to leave the opea country of Va^^ 
lencia in a great measure exposed to 
the Spanish armies. The Spaniards 
wAnld thus be enabled to obtain posses- 
sion of that part of the country which 
it was othenriae out of their powers 
and beyond their means, to occupy, if 
Tarragona, by means of this vigoroof 
attack, should fidl, the views of the 
commander of the forces would be very 
considerably advanced; but, shou)d 
circumstances oblige General Murray 
to raise the siege and embark, his in^ 
structions directed that he should r^ 
turn immediately to Valencia, and aa* 
sist the Spadarda in profiting by the 
absence of a large portion of the 
French army; or, at least, that he 
should oonfirm any advantatfea which 
the Spaniards might aboe, during hia 
absence, have acquired. The wntde 
spirit of the memorandum-^he objacta 
and views of the commander- in^hief-* 
the place where Sir John Murray waa 
directed to land— the immediaite junc- 
tion which he was ordered to ibtn 
with the right of the Spanish armie*, all 
these drcumstancesseemed to point out 
an immediate return in case oi failure at 
Tarragona. It was obvious that if htf 
neglected to foUow this course, the 
French troopa would be enabled to 
retrace their steps, and contend once 
more in the formidable position which 
they had occupied before the aairal ex- 
peditu>n was undertaken-; and thus the 
success of the plan formed by Lord 
Wellington, however it mi|^t have 
been advanced in the first instance. 

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would be greatly eadaDgered, if not 
entirely dereited. 

On the 2d of June^ the fleet destined 
for this expedition, anchored to the 
eastward of the point of Salon ; and 
the soldiers, who had been previously 
ordered to hold themselTes in readiness 
to land, were put into the boats ; but 
the surf was so hicrh, that, in the opi- 
nion of Admiral Hallowell, who com- 
manded the naval branch of the expe* 
dition, it would have been unsafe to 
land, and the troops accordingly re- 
turned to the ships. 

Before the fleet came to anchor, a 
brigade, commanded by Colonel F^- 
Tost, was deUched to the CoU de Bid- 
laguer ; and the Spanish general Co- 
pons, in compliance with a req\(est 
made to him, detached, during the 
night, two battalions to co«operate in 
the attack on Fort St PhiUippe. On 
the 5th, two other Spanish oattalions 
joined, in consequence of some move- 
ment of the enemy from Tortosa; 
and on the 7th the rort capitulated. 

On the Sd of June, soon after sun- 
xise, the debarkation commenced $ and, 
during the course of that day, the 
whole of the infantry, with some field- 
pieces, were landed. Tarragona was 
immediately reconnoitred and invest- 
ed ; the point of attack was decided 
upon, and a place for the depot of 
artillery stores fixed— Having recon- 
noitred the fortress^ the general deci- 
dedon attacking it on the western side, 
which was not only the weakest, but 
the most convenient for bringing up 
the stores to the batteries. Unfor* 
tnnately, however, the enemy had very 
nearly completed the re-establishment 
of the Fuerte Reale, (which lies be- 
tween 350 and 400 yards from the 
body of the place), which it was ne- 
cessary to take, before any batteries 
could be erceted a^nst the town. 
The enemy was still at work at the 
fort ; and to prevent his strengthening 
it» two batteries were begun on the 

evening of the 4th ; although the as* 
sailants, according to the report of 
General Murray, were yet in no state 
of preparation to carry on the opera- 
tions? of the siege. — On the morning 
of the 6th these batteries opened their 
fire with good effect ; but it was found 
expedient to erect another battery of 
two 24-pounders, which was beg^un 
and completed on the night of the 
6th. At day.break of the ?th, thia 
battery opened its fire ; and, on the 
morning of the 8th, the Fuerte Real 
was reported, by the commanding en- 
{^ineer, to be practicably breached. 

When this officer, however, made 
his report to the general, he requested 
that tne work should not be stormed, 
as he could turn the immediate posses- 
sion to no account, whilt^ an attempt to 
retain the fort would cost the lives of 
many men. Every delay was to be re- 
gretted, but as the state of the fort 
was such, that it could be taken when 
convenient, 'General Murray consent- 
ed to defer the attack, and directed 
that the fire upon the fort should con- 
tinue only to prevent its re-establish- 

During this time the artillery and 
en^neer horses, and the cavalry and 
artillery stores, were landed, when 
the w«ither would permit, and the 
engrineer officers contmued their pre- 
parations for the siege. On the 8th, 
the operations were sufficiently ad- 
vanced to enable Major Thackaray, 
the chief officer of engineers, at a dw- 
tance of about 450 yards from the 
body of the place, to construct two 
heavy batteries to enfilade it. On the 
night of the iOth, and the morning 
or the 11th, their fire was opened; 
but although the fire was well direct- 
ed, and kept up vrith great spirit, that 
of the garrison was unduninished. 
During the course of the day. Major 
Thackaray having reported that he 
was now perfectly prepared to push 
the siege with vigour, the fire on the 

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Chaf. la] 



Foertelteale was increased, and it was 
decided to storm that work during 
the night. The intelligence^ howeyer, 
which General Murraj receiTed late 
that eveningy of the approach of Mar- 
shal Suchet» and of the inarch of a 
French colamn from Baroeloiia» pre* 
vented him from carrying his intention 
into execution.—** He uiought/* ao- 
ccffding to his own statement^ *<it 
would have been an useless waste of. the 
fires of British soldiers, to attempt to. 
carry a work which he saw must be 
abandoned the next day." So far had 
the operations against Tarragona been 
earned when the siege was raised. 

*< In the first view of the case,'' 
said Sir John Murray, when address- 
ing Liord Wellingrton on the subject of 
this miscarriage, '* your lordship may 
peihamsbeof opiniont that more migfatt 
have been done ; and, under more fa- 
▼ourable circumstances, no doubt we 
might have been feurther advanced, 
but tinder no circumstances materially 
ao. Your lordship, in judging of this 
pointy will, I hope, take into considev- 
ation the strength of the place, which 
although the outworks (with the ex* 
Gcption of the Fuerte Reale) weie de* 
stroyed, was still in a fomuoable state 
of defence, such indeed, that Major 
Thackaray, on the 8th or 9th, de- 
clared it * his deliberate opinion, that 
the place could not be taken in less 
than fourteen or fifteen days from that 

M It is likewise to be recollected, 
that the army invested the place witlu 
out a single preparation having been 
made for a siege. We had not a ain- 
^ £ucine or ^bion, nor did the ves- 
ael arrife, which had been sent to 
Ivica for the materials collected, un- 
til the evening of the 4th or 5th. It 
was not until the day following their 
arrival that the materiab comd be 
biDi:^[ht to the depot. 

** A considerable delay was farther 
experienced by Major Thackaray from 

the irreguhrity in landing the stores-^ 
much of this, from the surf and wea- 
ther, was probably unavoidable ; but 
much likewise proceeded from the ir« 
regularity of the transport boats, and 
from their working in the night, when 
they could not be seen. A considera- 
ble delay arose likewise from the slow- 
ness, and the {peat unwillingness witk 
which the foreign troops worked. This 
was a most serious inconvenience, and 
delayed the opening of the two last 
batteries for ^4 hours. — It reouired 
an additional party of 200 Britisti sol- 
diers, to carry to the batteries the 
ammunition which one of these parties 
threw away when they cam^ under 

** All these circumsunces together 
tended to retard our progress ; but still, 
frt>m the 4th at night, till the 11th in 
the morning, five batteries were con- 
structed ; and we were then in a state 
to prosecute the siege without fear of 
delay, had we by g^ood fortune been 
enabled to continue it. Before I con- 
clude this part of the subject, I beg 
to sUte that it was not till after the 
fidl of the Coll de Ballaeuer, that, in 
point of fire, we derived any material 
assistance from the naval branch of the 
expedition. — The bombs and gun- 
boats came from thence on the 8th 
and 9th, and I think, but I cannot 
for certain recollect if it was so, that 
some of them were again sent back on 
the 10th and 11th.'' 

General Murray defended his don- 
duct, in raising the siege, by stating, 
that very largeTrench armies were ad- 
vancing to the relief of the place. 
From the most accurate statements 
which he had it in his power to pro- 
cure, he estimated Marshal SuchetV 
force, in ihe kingdom of Valencia, to 
be 23 or 24,000 men, and the army of 
Catalonia, including the garrison, to 
be 22,900, composing altogether an 
army of 46,000 men. The French 
however^ coidd not have brought all 

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tbiB force to act ag&inst the alUed at>> 
BIT in Catalonk; but rappoie they 
idt in Valencia 11»000 men, (audit 
appears they did not leave so raaay) 
tad 10>000 in the ganisoat of Cata- 
loniay a disposeable army of 'i^fiOd 
men at least was stiU at the conmand 
of Sudiet* To oppose this army. 
General Murray stated that ke had 
mbout 1 ."5)0000^1 under his owi iinme- 
daate command ; and from greneral Co- 
pons's statement, his disposenbie force 
amounted to 8;500men, without pay, 
without discipline» without a eingle 
piece of cannon, without the means of 
wibaisthig, and totally incapable of act- 
iftg in uie field. The allied army 
therefore consisted of 21,500 men ; of 
whom 4,500 were British and Ger* 
ttans, 13 or 14,000 Siciliaas, 600 Ca- 
labrese, and the remainder Spaniards. 
In cavalry the enemy were greatly «U- 
perior.-^huch were the strength and 
composition of an army, with which 
General Murray was expected to meat 
the enemy's force, compoeed of the 
best troops of Fii^ce, and Idng ha- 
bituated to act ia i body.^^But the 
difference in the nhmtipn of the ar- 
nies was ix>t less striking. TheFiYnch 
general possessed, «n every direction, 
iortresses around him to coiner his ar- 
my, if defeated ; to furnish his sup- 
phes, or to retire upoa, if he wished 
to avoid an action, for the purpose of 
bringing up more troops. The allied 
army, on the contrary, was in the opeik 
fieM, without one servkeable peini 
d'apptrif and without a place at which to 
halt even for a day. But in case of re- 
treat, whither could it retire ? To the 
ships. Here, indeed, the army would 
have been safe, if it ever reached them ; 
but an embarkation, which it vrould 
have required thi«e days at least to 
complete, was too serious an operation 
for any army in an open bay, and on a 
beach, where experience had already 
shewn it vnts impossible to disembark, 
bat in tilt lighteit boats. Had af« 

fairs come to thia extremity, the allia 
mvst have kist every heiiBe bdoMring 
to the army, — every piece <^ MS an 
tillery, and, in all probability, th< 
greater part, if not tne wh(^, of th^ 
covering division of inftmtry. 

The first reports of the enemy'i 
movements reached General Murra) 
<m the 7th June, when ke^ learned thai 
the disposeable column from GeitMM 
was in march for Bai-eekHia, and that 
every effort was maktag to cotted 
10,000 men inmiediately at that {dace ; 
to this corps were attached 4 p&ecei 
of aitillery. This report was coa^m 
ed from every quarter. General Copon 
concurred in the statement; Cofdne 
Manso, who commanded the advaocei 
posts, and who had a ceosttnt coBitam 
nication with Bait:ek>tka, daily mad^ 
the tame report; on one occasion 
he rated the enemy's force so higl 
as 1^,000 men ; in short, from what 
ever source General Murray derivd 
inteUigence, he found the i^umbers ti 
agree. — On the 10th this column o^ 
copied Vilb Franca ; and ou the llti 
established itself at VendriU, which i 
about twelve hours march from Tarrc 
gona, whence it had the choice of prd 
oeeding by either of three Convenieii 
roads With a very inadequate dii 
poseable force, each of theie roa^ 
muu have been occupied by the allie 
army ; and the two corps, (such is tfa 
difficulty of tottimunicatioa) poste 
where the enemy did not advana 
could not have joined the third bod] 
which would thus have been exoose 
to the whole force of the as^aUantl 
Thiscorps of the enemy, it is true, su^ 
denly broke up (but after the exped 
tibn had re-embarked) alarmed by t! 
appearance of Sir Edward Pellew 
TCet in the Bay of Rossas, an evci 
with which General Murray waa ui 

On the other hand, from Valenc 
Marshal Suchet was advancingwith tl 
Utmost rapidity.-'^Qihe 9th, Ocner 

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Mm I ay^ g c c i t e A^dwetlMH SochKliad 

left tli«t place OD the 7ib wkk9000 in. 

fintry ; from the corpt in hk nmr^ he 

had ample mean to reiofiMce this body; 

IO9OOO men had actually arrived at 

Tortoaa before this timei and 250Q had 

reached Lerida. Lateintheeveoiiigof 

the 1 1th, informatioa was received that 

ftaehet had quitted Toitosa on the 

10th ; and it was dear, that if he 

^oee to pass by the mountain roads 

(as he actually did) to the plain of 

Turagooa, he nsi^ arrive before the 

alicd army on the 1 ^th« The head 

of one of htt cohimos actually ap* 

peaied 00 the plain in the course of 

that day ; and the British cavalry were 

engaged with it.*-The incumbrance 

of artillery might have impeded his 

naich ; but this arm he thought an- 

aecessary, as there was none to oppose 

him. He knew he would have to coa« 

tend with hiiantry alone> of which a 

irery small prc^rtion was British^ oc^ 

Cttf^ned Jki a sfege» and obliged to divided 

its attention iMtween a more powerful 

enemy on the one mdtf and the gar» 

liaon of l^nragona on the other<— 

Sochy accordlnfg to Sir John Murray's 

acconnty would have been the state of 

the army, had he dehiyed the embarka^ 

tioa, and had the French general chosen 

to pash forward ; and when the stake 

was so great, there was every reason 

to believe the enemy would act with 


An express from the CoH'de Ballfi* 
|rner, dnring the night of the l^h, 
mforaing General Marray that the 
enemy haul passed a large bod^ of in- 
£uitry towards Tarragona, induced 
him to proceed thither immediately. 
The cavahry and part of the field-train 
had already been sent to the Coll' de 
Balfa^rner to be embarked; and on 
bis arrival^ he found that the cavalry 
had been engaged, and that it would 
be necessary to land more regiments of 
infantry than were stationed there to 
protect the embarkatiom As the re- 

mamder of the iafantrv arrived, he 
was induced to land tnem likewisct 
in the hope of being able to cut 
off a division of the French stationed 
at BaadUlos, whither they had re- 
tired on the arrival of the fleet at the 
CoM de BaRagner. On the night 
of the 15th, lk>wever, Suchet with« 
drew tlus corps ; and on the 16th the 
dirisioB of the allied army which had 
been opposed to it returned to the 
Collide Balla?uer. On the 17th the 
British gener^ expected an attack,— 
for the corps from Barcelona had ad* 
vanced to Cambritti, about ten mil^ 
fvom the position now occupied by the 
alKes; hut, for what reason it is im- 
possible to explain, this corps with^ 
drew to Reuz during the night: In 
the afternoon of the same day. Lord 
William Bentinck re-embarked the 

Such is^ the history of this unfor- 
tunate expedition as giveil by its conn 
raander, and such the views upoil 
which he Justified hi» conduct. The 
opinion of^the public was much divi^ 
Sid. respecting the character of thes^ 
operations. The friends of the gene- 
ral defended his conduct vridi zed; 
« On hearing," said Aey, ** that a very 
superior force was advancing against 
him, he thought proper to embark hi$ 
troops, which he did without loss, leav* 
ing some pieces of heavy ordnance in 
the advanced batteries* Was there 
any humiliation in this for our army?—* 
and what is the fault of Sir John Mur« 
ray i Haring an army inferior in force 
to that of the enemy, and which mi^t 
have been of great use at another pomt^ 
he did not chuse to risk its destruction* 
But it was said, * there are positions 
near Tarragona — a good one especially 
to the eastward— where, if Sir John 
had entrenched himself, he would have 
been quickly joined by thousands of 
Catalonians. jBroles and Manso alone 
were able to stop the Barcelona forcCf 
and in the critical situation of the 

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French affairs in Spain, Sucbet would 
neither have had time nor indinatioii 
to cany on a protracted and hazard- 
ous warfare in that part of the coun- 
try.* — Now, without giving^ Sir John 
Murray too much credit, it may be 
assumed, that if there had been such 
'good positions a little to the east- 
ward,' if he had thought he would 
have been joined by thousands of Ca- 
talonians, and if £ roles and Manso 
could have stopped the Barcelona 
force, he would not have re-embdrk- 
ed. But " in the critical situation of 
the French affairs, Sucbet could not 
have spared time to carry on a pro- 
tracted warfare in that part of the 
country." Let us recollect, however, 
that when Sir John Murray embarked, 
the great battle of Vittoria had not 
been gained^ Reference was on this 
subject made to the official accounts bv 
Sucbet, which appeared in the French 
papers, and in which it was stated that 
on the 10th June troops had been col 
lected at Barcelona ; and on the same 
day a strong corps had arrived at Tor- 
tosa. Thus were the French upon 
the 10th within 20 miles of both flanks 
of the allied army^ and in very superior 
numbers. On the 11th, Sucbet, by 
his own account, had a partial engage- 
aoent with the English dragoons near 
Perello, between the ColTde BalJa- 
suer and the sea. On the l2th his 
fires on the top of the mountains could 
be seen by the garrison of Tarragona ; 
9nd on the ISth his troops approached 
the place. Meanwhile General Ma- 
thieu with the troops from Barcelona 
had reached Arbos and Vendrill, on 
the northern side of Tarragona. These 
circumstances stated by Sucbet are suf- 
ficient, it was said, to rescue the alli- 
ed army from the charge of having em- 
barked uith precipitation upon recei- 
ving intelligence that-^the enemy was 
mpproaching. Before the troops did 
embark, the columns both from Barce- 
lona and Valencia were almost within 

sight of the besieged fortress. The 
embarkatioB of the army on the IBtk 
became a measure of necessity, Tarra. 
gona not having been reduced, and the 
allied troops bem^ placed between two 
armies, one of wmch was certainly tu- 
perior, and the other probably equal 
in numerical stren^h to themsdves.— 
But why then, it mi^t be asked, attack 
Tarragona at all, if the enemy conld 
send this superior force against us ? To 
this it was replied, that hopes were i«a- 
sonably entertained of taking it befbie 
the enemy approached to its rdicf $ 
particularly as a Spanish aimy under 
the Duke del Parque and gesif ral £lio 
had been left at Valencia. Theejc- 
pedition had been ordered by Lord 
Wellington himself, and the Marquia 
WellesteY stated, that « the force at 
Alicant nad been embarked by Lord 
Wellington's orders, and had landed 
near Tarragona, precisely according 
to that nolde lord's plan.'' It were 
superfluoos to say any thing more to 
prove the wisdom of the pbui. Does 
any unnecessary delay appear to have 
taken pla^ in the operations^ On 
the 31st of May th^ array embarked, 
-»on the 3d of Jane it landed near Sa* 
Ion ; the Coll de Ballaguer and Tarra* 
gona were immediately invested, and 
the former was taken in four days.- 
Sucbet hinuelf could not censure his 
antagonist, but by inventing a story 
that the- fortifications of Tarragona 
had been razed. Had this been tn]e» 
what necessity could there have been 
for investinsr Tarragona in the same 
numner as afi other fortified places are 
invested ? 

** I deny," said Sir John Murray, in 
the close of the defence which he made 
before the court of enquiry appointed 
to investigate his conduct, *< that any 
evidence exists to prove that I ever 
considered the capture of Tarragona as 
impracticable, tiU the hour I crave the 
orders to raise the sie^e. I have en- 
deavoured to prove Un9 fact by the 

Digitized by 


Chap, la] 



oootiniied operatioiis which we ctrried 
0Q9 by the disposition for attacking the 
ont-workfl on the night of the llth, 
and the arrangements made for the re- 
ception of the enemy on the 12th. I 
hate attempted to proTe, that a perse- 
lerance in the siege was my positive 
aod prescribed duty, accordme to the 
tpint of my instructions, and that a de« 
parture from that line would, in, all 
probability, nay, I may say to a cer« 
tainty, have occasioned the most fatal 
conseqiaeooes to the allied armies on 
the eastern coast of Spain. It would 
have enabled Marshal Suchet to re-oc- 
cupy the entrenched position on the 
Xucar, and, probably, to crush the 
Duque del Parque before there was a 
possibility that I could -have come to 
nis assistance. I ha? e shewn what the 
probable consequences might have been 
to any division of marines and seamen 
whkn Lord Exmouth might have 
landed near the Bay of Rosas ; and I 
have endeavooured to prove, that the 
siege of Tarragona, and not merely a 
feint upon it, was in the contemplation 
of the commander-in-chief. 

^ I do not pretend to say, that in 
the Hne of conduct I prescribed to my- 
self no risk was incurred : I knew, 
when I decided on continuing the siege 
after the 8th, that I did run a very 
considerable risk ^ and what military 
operatipn, may I ask, is free from it ? 
Every battle which is fought is a risk, 
the whole expedition itself was a risk* 
No one will surely assert, that in war 
nothing is to be hazarded ; on the con- 
trary^ the first quality of a conunander 
appears to be, to risk with judgment, 
and he does his best when he takes 
care that the nature of the risk is infe- 
rior to the importance of the object. 
I may apply this axiom to the present 
case i 1 risked a few pieces of iron can- 
non, and some stores — for what ? for 
the contingent benefit, that I might by 
this risk possibly succeed in the cap- 
ture of the place, or ensure the success 

of two of the oUacts pointed oat bt* 
the Duke of Wellington ; but, at au 
events, on the certainty of drawing the 
French armies to me, and occasioning 
them a long and harassing march, from 
which they did, accordingly, most ma> 
terially suffer ; and of ensuring a cer- . 
tain time to the co-operating Spanish 
armies for the execution of their part 
of the general plan, which, after all, 
was the most essential of the whole. I 
did incur this risk, whether with judge- 
ment or not will rest with the court 
to decide ; but, at least, I can affirm^ 
that it was done in the best^xercise of 
my abilities, and with that due delibe^ 
ration which the importance of the pro- 
ceeding required. I was not bUnd to 
the consequences which would proba- 
bly arise to myself in the first instance ; 
but if I had permitted so weak a con-^ 
sideration to seduce me from what my 
judgement told me was for the advan- 
tage of my king and country, I should 
ricnty have deserved the niost severe 
sentence which could be pronounced 
against me. Such was the view I took of 
the case, and the hneof conduct which it 
appeared to me right to adopt. It waa 
founded, in my humble opinion, less 
with a view to the object itself, than 
to the general plan of Lord Welling-^ 
ton's operations ; and I contend, there- 
fore, that my conduct was no way un- 
military, and so hr from being in op^ 
position to the spirit of my instructions, 
that it was in strict unuon with the 
letter itself. I den^r this charge, there* 
fore, both in its pnnciple and its appli- 
cation. In its pnnciple, because I had 
ia my possession no express written or- 
ders which directed my return to Va- 
lencia, in a language so decisive as to 
deprive me of all discretion as to the 
period of re-embarkation ; and in its 
application, because, admitting such 
order to have existed with a view to 
securing the acquisitions of the Duke 
del Parque, I contend, that, in the re^ 
lative position of the hoitile armies. 

Digitized by 




these acqutaitrans were m no degree 
cndaBgered by my absence: on the 
contrary, I makttahi that the Kne of 
conduct I pursuedf was the best calcu* 
lated to promote their extension and 
their sfkfety ; and that my secondary 
operations (if secondary they can be 
called) were in no respect contrary 
to the letter, while they were in direct 
unison with the spirit of my instruc- 
tions. But to call them secondary 
operations is to lose sight of the first 
principle that produced them, and of 
the ultimate object they had in view. 
Their first principle was the army's 
safety, and their ultimate object its 
entire re-embarkation ; that re*embark« 
ation which I am accused of unneces- 
sarily delaying, which was decided on 
the moment it was determined to raise 
the siege of Tarragona, and which eve* 
ry effort was exerted to carry into ef- 
fect. Imperious circumstances inter- 
rupted the operation. It was only 
when these ceased that it could be 
completed with safety ; but the prin- 
ciple and the end remained the same. 
In point of fact, I might assert that 
the siege of Tarragona could never be 
•aid to be raised till the whole army 
was embarked-^for it was the embark- 
ation of the army which constituted 
the raising of the siege, and if the suc- 
ceeding operations growin? out of cir* 
cumstances which I could not con- 
troul, have been satisfiactorily ac- 
counted for, then am I accused of not 
d6ing that, which every hour after I 
determined to raise the siege, was con- 
sumed in the anxious attempt to ac^ 
complish. It is one thing to linger un- 
necessarily in the execution of public 
duty, and it is another wisely to ex 
tend the period of active operation foe 
the accomplishment of an important 
object, which falls within the sphere 
of rational and duly regulated discre- 
tion,-»a discretion which exists within 
the breast of every officer, and the 
limits of every command^ unless ex* 

pressly disallowed by superior orders. 
In the instructions of Lord WelHngr. 
ton, now before the court, beg lesve 
to express my firm, but humble con* 
viction, there was no such limitatioo. 

** From what has been said, I tmat 
the court will be convinced (if argu- 
ment oa the subject were necessary ) of 
the great imprudence, nay, the palpa- 
ble error 1 should have committed (be- 
ing resolved to re embark), had I deiav- 
ed the operation till the enemy should 
have an opportunity of attacking me 
during its progress. If \ have been 
fortunate enough to satisfy the courtt 
that the allied army was neither. from 
its numbers, composition, or equip* 
ments, equal to a>ntend with that of 
the enemy, it follows that whatever 
should have exposed it to the unequal 
contests must have been injudicious and 
culpable, as militating against my or* 
ders ; and on these grounds I contend^ 
that any measure which should have 
brought me into contact with the ene- 
my after the 1 1th at nighty would have 
bc^n so much the more censuraUe, as 
I should myself have sought the situa- 
tion which it was my duty to avoid* 
I allude to the different plans, either 
of marching to oppose General De 
Caen, or to arrest the progress of Mar- 
ital Suchet. To* both these 1 answer, 
that my force was unequal to the con- 
test ; and that the portion of it which 
might have been left before Tarrago* 
na, must have fallen a sacrifice to the 
one or the other of these generals. I 
shall avoid all calculation on this pointy 
the strength of the contending armiea 
being already before the court I may 
be permitted, however, to observe, that 
delay, in what way soever produced* 
must ultimately have brougbt me in 
presence of the united columns of the 
enemy : with the small divided force 
under my command, what termination 
could then have been expected ? The 
gallantry of the trodps might indeed 
nave forced the enemy's raoks^ and 

Digitized by 


Chaf. 10.] 



caabled them to reach the beach ; but 
what courage, what discipline, what 
arraogementSy could have enabl^ them 
to advance a step further ? A death, 
glorious indeed to themselTes, but un- 
profitable to their country, or certain 
captivity, would aAone have remained 
to them. No man can regret more than 
I do, the cannon and ftoret which were 
left in the hands of ^e enemy, or that 
hev at might be expected, should boast 
of them as tropes. But he could not 
boast of them as useful trophies, he 
could not boast that the possession of 
them altered theaspectof thecampai^j 
or that the loss or the stores cnpp&d 
ia any degree an army, which subse- 
tpientlT kept in check so large a por- 
tion of the troops of the enemy. That 
araiy was still entire : it did not lose 
by this embarkation one man, one 
horse, or one piece of field-artillery. It 
was not even disabled from undertaking 
a aege in any material deme, for it lost 
only seventeen serviceable and one un* 
serviceable out of 91 pieces of cannon. 
Bat, would not the enemy have been 
enabled to boast of the importance as 
well as the possession of trophies, if, 
instead of the spiked and useless can- 
non, which he is so minutely represent- 
ed as conveyiop into Tarragona, he 
cooid have prooaimed the removal of 
aO our field train, and its equipments, 
into the fortress ? Would the hfeless 
bodies of some thousand soldiers, who 
bad died unprofitably, or the carcases 
of many hundred animals slaughtered 
upon the beach unnecessarily ; would 
theKy I -ask, have been less a trophy 
than a few unserviceable and dismount- 
ed cannon -? Would the capture of our 
standards, and the captivity of some 
thousands of our countrymen, have 
been less a subject of triumph for the 
pen of Marshal Suchet ? Would these 
have been no trophies ? They would 
have been great trophies, and incon- 
tettible proofs, at the same time, not 
#nl^ of the destruction and defeat of 

VOL* ▼!. PAST 1. 

the allied army, and theinci^acity of 
its commander, but trophies, which 
would have foretold to the world the 
inutihty of aQ the efforts to be nsade 
to bring the war in Spain to a success- 
ful termination, during the course of 
the campaign Which was then about to 
commence. An eve;it, such as I de- 
scnbe, while it must have darkened 
the brijgrht prospects then opening to 
the British nation and to Europe, and 
blasted every hope which the victories 
of Lord Wellington encouraeed us to 
cherish, must have hrought down well 
merited. condemnation on the head of 
the unfortunate commander. I do not 
paint this scene too strongly: I had 
every reason to expect that such would 
have been our fate, had I listened to the 
voice which counselled delay at such a 

Such was the defence of Sir John 
Murray; — ^but a very different view 
of these operations was deduced bv 
many, even from the information which 
the general was pleased to furnish in 
his own dispatches. From General 
Murray's statements it appears, that 
on the 9th or 10th of June, he was ac- 
quainted with the arrival of Marshal 
Suchet at Valencia, with 9000 men — 
intelligence having been previously re- 
ceived of the arrival of a French ^rce 
at Tortosa, and another at Lerida. 
From the comparative statement given 
of the strength of the allies, and of the 
enemy, it seems to have been the opi- 
nion of General Murray, that Marshal 
Suchet could bring above 20,000 of 
the best French troops ioto the field, 
and might have attacked the allies with 
that force in the course of four or five 
days. It appears also, that from the 
arrangements which must necessarily 
have oeen made, the force of the allies 
in the field would have amounted only 
to about 16,000 British, Germans, 
SiciUans, and Spaniards ; and that of 
this number, nearly 13,000 were con- 
sidered as of a description to be relied 
M t 

Digitized by. 




upon only when in positioBy whfle to 
fii^ht in position was not at the option 
of the allies, but of the enemy. The 
force which General Murray relied up- 
on, under all circumstancesi was redu« 
ced) by his statements* to 4500 Brt» 
tish ; and it seems also, that in case oi 
liisastery retreat was considered by the 
general as nearly impracticable. In his 
consideration, at leasts the dangers and 
difficulties of the re-embarkation ha<l 
become sufficiently apparent at a very 
early period. It was the opinion of 
the general also, that it would hare 
been quite impossible to take Tarra- 
gona by storm, or by a coup de main ; 
for he did not make such attempt lor 
many days* when the necessity of do- 
ing so, even with much risk, was so 
urgent. We learn from his dispatcher, 
not only that a coup-de'tnain was con- 
•idered as impracticable, but that even 
eight or ten days would have been in* 
sufficient, in Sir John Murray's judge- 
ment, to have put him in possession of 
the fortress. But General Murray 
must necessarily have been possessed 
of neariy the whole of this inK)rmation 
5ome days previously to that on which 
the re-embarkation took place ; of the 
whole, of course, of that which con- 
cerned his own army and the state of 
the works of Tarragona. The reports 
concerning the enemy appear to have 
been, as stated by the general, in the 
main points consistent ; and, with the 
exception of some slight variations as to 
numbers, nearljr uniform} they were 
considered credible and appear to have 
agreed with the better and more certain 
knowledge possessed by General Mur- 
ray. It is still more material to remark, 
that he himself seems at all times to have 
given them full credit. How, then, 
does this state of matters explain or 
lUSMfyhis conduct? The town was not 
to be taken for eight or ten days ; and 
according to what Colonel Thackaray, 
the chief engineer, stated to General 
Murray, it could not be reduced in 

less than fourteen days. The nun 
bers of the French, .and the descrij 
tion of their troops were such, tha 
according to the opinion formed I 
the general, the enemy was not to I 
resisted in the field with any fiair pro 
pect of success by the aUied arm; 
The enemy was approaching, and fro! 
different circumstances, had the optic 
of attacking the allies in the course ( 
four or five days. Why, then, persi 
in the siege, and continue to land store 
provisions, heavy guns, and every thin 
requisite for the capture of the town 
VAij expose matenals of such impo 
tance in the ensuing campaign, whc 
the inevitable conclusion to be draw 
from the premises, if at all correct, i 
that the general was at the time awar 
that his neasures could be of no ava 
as to the object in view i In such cii 
cumstances, his whole thoughts, plan 
and exertions, should have been turue 
to the pursuit and security of oth< 
objects, the success of whicn, thoufl 
always, until his return to Valenci 
precarious, it was stiU in his power t 
promote and perhaps to confirm. 

The force which the enemy coul 
coDect in Catalonia in a given time,- 
the impossibility of any impressic 
being made on Tarragona within tk 
time, — ^the impropriety of risking '* 
action, — the necessity of raising t) 
siege, — and the consei^uent failure ' 
one great object of the instructions ;- 
all this appears to ;be assumed in tl 
dispatch written by General Murri 
to Lord Wellington ; but the geoer 
consoles himself by stating, that 1 
hopes to be able to shew t&t no tia 
was lost, when he had decided ufK 
abandoning the siege. On this poll 
no great difference of opinion existe* 
He was charged with^loss of tio 
certainly ; but this time was lost i 
coming to the decision, and not in tl 
execution, in which an unnecetiaf 
haste and precipitation were conspici 
ous. The delay with which he wi 

Digitized by 


Cha^. 10.] 



dttrged was in not retunuDfl^ instantly 
to Valencia, according to toe instrtic* 
doAS received by him» so soon as the 
sege was abandoned. The charge of 
annecessary delay was never applied 
to the manner in which the resolution 
of abandoning the siege, when once 
adopted, was put into execution. 

In one of General Murray's dis- 
patches to Lord Wellington, a sentence 
of condemnation seems, as it were, 
passed upon his own conduct, and 
that in ver^f strong terms. <*Uponare> 
view of this case,'' says he, << I believe 
yomr lordship will ratner be of opinion, 
that I continued the siege too long, 
than that I abandoned it too soon, 
and I can only plead an extreme anxi- 
ety to carry your lordship's views into 
execution as my excuse, /sotu the 
mametU lohen in aUprudence the cannon 
ciight to have been embarked^ and the 
enterprise abandoned f but that fol- 
lowed,'' 8cc* And then he proceeds 
to state the reasons for not having 
acted on this opinion, which although 
they might justify him for not imme- 
diately re-embarking the whole of 
the infantry, and leaving the spot al- 
together, yet in no way explain his 
•continuing on shore, and persevering^ 
to land the heavy runs, stores, provi- 
sioos» Sec, up to tne very hour of re- 
embarkation. Neither can they apply 
more than any other part of his state- 
ment, as an answer to the charge of lin- 
gering sttbsequentbr on the coast, and 
ve^hmding the whole expedition. The 
resolt ofhis statement appears tobe, that 
the following up one great object of his 
isstroctions wassacrihced to an anxiety 
Co accomplish that which was admitted 
to be impracticable-— a line of conduct 
atiemingly at variance with the better 
jndgment of the eeneral himself, and 
with the instructions which ought to 
have been his gruide. 

On the 8th and ^)th, it appears 
that nothing could be done ; but on 
the 10th and iltb, when the raising 

of the siege had become ine^^bk, 
instead of being employed in landing 
more stores and gans, or carrying them 
forward into situations of greater dan- 
ger and exposure, the most zealous 
efiFort should have been made to pre- 
pare for re-embarking every thing 
which had been already endangered $ 
and which from the period, when the 
attempt upon the town was consider^ 
ed as impracticable, remained expo* 
ed without any possibility of zdnaU 
tage. This certaUly appears to have 
been the moment seen by the general 
himself, «< When in aU prudence the 
cannon ought to have been embarks 
edf* — and it must be regretted that 
his conduct was not more consistent 
with his conviction. In one of his let- 
ters there is the following passage : 
** For days an embarkation might be 
impracticable, and that consideration 
made me extremely anxious, when the 
continuance of the siege became im- 
practicable, to profit of the state of 
the beach, as it could not be depend- 
ed upon from one day to another." 
Here again the general seemed to be 
the first to pronounce censure upoa his 
own conduct. 

As it appears then to have been 
deaiiy ascertained before the JOth, 
that nothing within the ran^e of or- 
dinary prol^bilities could nave put 
the aUies in possession of Tarragona, 
the proper use to have been made of 
the 10th and 11th was to have secured 
on board the fleet the materiel o£ the 
expedition, which had become useless 
on shore— which was then every in- 
stant in danger without any adequate 
object I and part of which, ia conse- 
quence of the general's not having 
acted in pursuance of his own convic- 
tion, was ultimately abandoned. From 
the details given in the general's dis- 
patches as to the use which was made 
of the 3d of June, on che first debarka- 
tion, the importance of a single day is 
sufficieatly obvious ; nearly all the in- 

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fantry— seTeral fi^ pieces, and a pro« 
pordoo of itows aod ^ggage, were 
miMj put «n «bore od that one day, 
when -there was no particular etimulut 
to-more than ordinary exertions —Al- 
though a brisk attack is certainly re- 
commended in the tnsliuctions» it has 
never been insinuaied« that a inore 
Tigorous-proseoutionof the siege would 
have been practicable, or attended with 
success. One fact, however, men- 
tioned by &t John Murray, it does 
appear toi>e material to point out, viz. 
that six <twenty-four pounders, four 
howitzevs, «nd four mortars were not 
placed in *the 4>atterie8, ajrainst the 
body of the place, until the ni^ht of the 
10th, a .period when, bstead of more 
artillery being .^acad in a situation to 
make tits desertion and destruction in- 
eviuble, all that was already in danger 
should have been removed. 

With respect to the conduct pur- 
sued immediately after the siege was 
raised) it was remarked, that, accord- 
ing toJSirJohn Murray's instructions, 
the only remaining object then was, 
bis immediate return io Valencia, to 
x^-operate with and assist the Spanish 
armies in front of the French position 
4>n the Xucar. — So soon as the plan of 
.re-«mbarkation at Tarragona was de- 
xided upon^ however^ the cavalry and a 
l)art ^f the iield-lrain were sent over 
undtotheCoUdeBallaguer. Itwasaf> 
ierwards judged expedient to land more 
infsntry.ontoat point, for the further 
protectiou ^ the re^embarkation. 
When the remainder of the infiintiy 
arrived it was resolved to reland the 
whole with a view of cutting o£F a di- 
.vision of Marshal Suchet's army at 
Bandilloz ; and upon the ISth or 14th 
.(the4>rQcise date not being suted) it 
appears that th« re-landing of the ex- 
pedition took place accordinglv. That 
this-oonduct was contrary both to the 
letter and to the spirit of Lord Wei- 
lingtoo's instructions, and inexpedient 
with a view to the .only object now re- 

maining, there can be no doubt* It re 

mains to be considered, therefore, whc 

ther there was a sufficient inducemen 

to adopt this line of conduct so contra 

ry to that which was pointed out b 

the commander of the forces i — It mui 

always be recollected, that Genen 

Murray thought himself unequal t 

contend with the forces of Bucbet whc 

united. It was on this account the sieg 

had just been raised, and the cannoi 

stores, and ammunition sacriBced. I 

was also the opinion of General Mui 

ray, thatSuchet had the power of witl 

drawing any advanced posts of h 

army when ne pleased, and of re-un 

ting the whole, and giving battle, whe 

it suited his convenience. It is necet 

sary only to refer to his various lettei 

to prove that all expectation of cuttin 

off any division of the enemy, wi 

deemed by Sir John Murray to be v 

sionary ; that, unless the enemy shoul 

be guilty of the greatest folly, the a 

tempt was impracticsble. Yet wit 

the full knowledge of all these fact 

the danger of re-embarkation at tl 

Coll de ^allaguer remaining the san 

as when General Murrey before d 

dined to embark the army at th; 

point, the prench armies remamin^ 

force the same, and in situation m 

proved, every g^rovod of okuecHon 1 

continuing on shore still existing, i 

the causes of the former hasty r 

embarkation, and of the great saa 

£ce8 which had just been made, beii 

in full foree, in opposition to evei 

principle upon which the general hi 

just been acting*-the very thing 

done and the very risks are incurre 

which before bad been so strong 

condemned, and this too when the i 

ducement which had operated in t 

Brst instance no lonnr existed, ai 

when no adequate object can be d 

covered to account for so strange 

deviation from the instructions recei 

cd.— To pursue the detail of fac 

we find them precisely such as the a 

Digitized by 


CflAF. 10.] 



goments and ttatanentt in General 
Mnrray't letters woold hsve led us to 
ezpectv-^On the night of the l^th, 
when the EngUsh approached, the 
French withdrew their corps from 
Bmdilloe ; and» in the meantime, the 
oorpv from Barcelona advanced to 
CambriUsy about ten miles from the 
dBed positions.— On -the IGth, the 
Engiian troops, in pursuit of the Ban- 
dfllos French diTision, returned with- 
out hsring accomptished their object, 
just aa might lisnre been expected ^ 
and on the 17 th, when the allied army^ 
according to the instmctiotts, ought to 
have been readj to act again in Va^ 
lenda. General Mmray found himself 
still near the Coll de BaUaguer. Here 
he remained, with every prospect 
of an impending general action, to 
a;void wluch, on the 12th so much had 
been sacrificed, and with every risk of 
a second re-embarkation to be still 
iDcamd. Lieutenant-Oeneral Lord 
WUIhua Bentinck then arrived on the 
17th, and the final re-embarkation of 
the whole army, which had a second 
time been resolved upon by General 
Murray (the idea of a general engage- 
ment having been abwloned), was, 
by the orders of Lord William Ben- 
tinck, immediately carried into execu- 

The fiicts of a hasty and precipitate 
embarkation, without any previous ar- 
rangement, and the consequent aban- 
doning of a considerable portion of ar- 
tillery, stores, and ammunition, it 
aeons difficult to dispute. So sudden 
was the resolution to re-embark fi- 
aally adc^ted, and so Httle were all 
parties prepared for this measure, that 
every arrai^rement vras making, and 
every exertion employed, for a more 
vigorous prosecution of the siege, up 
to the vtry moment when the execu- 
tion of thisnew resohidon had actually 
commenced. General Copons, who 
ooounanded the Spanish army, acting 
in co-operation with, and under the 

dh-ections of General Murray, must 
have been led to suppose, from the in- 
structions which he had received, that 
a battle with De Caen was on the 
eve of taking place, in which he vras 
to take a principal share ; and the Spa- 
nish general continued to act on tnat 
supposition, and to remain (of course 
with considerable risk to his own 
troops) undeceived until after the guns 
in the batteries were spiked, and a large 
portion of the alKed army was actud- 
ly on board the vessels. Nor was the 
resolution of sending the field artillery 
and cavalry for re-embarkation to a 
different and somewhat distant spot» 
near the Coll de BaUaguer, less extra- 
ordinary. This was the precise spot 
which had been represented by Gene^ 
ral Murray as so micertain and danger- 
ous, that for this very rea>on, he nad 
declined embarking the whole army 
there. A separation of the di£Eerent 
parts of the army was of course pro* 
duced by the embarkation of the in- 
fiuitry alone, leaving the guns and ca« 
valry without due protection, akbongh 
it was mainly to avoid this very evil 
that General Murray had detenmned 
not to aUow of a delay sufficient to 
enable the adnural to preserve the tror 
phies, which were, m consequence, 
abandoned* The &ct, also, that Ad- 
miral Hallowell did offer to secura 
every thing, if Sir John Murray would 
have consented to a certain delay, 
was very handsomely admitted by 
General Murray. Whether the delay 
proposed by the admiral might or 
might not, according to a fair calcula- 
tion, have been permitted with safety, 
in the circumstances* in which the ge- 
neral was pkced ;: whether, from the 
immediate approach of the enemy, or 
other causes, all additional zeal,, firm- 
neM, and exertion, would have been 
nnaraikng ; and whether the delay re- 
quited would or would not have in- 
volved the troops in a serious affair 
vith a very superior fovce, and have 

Digitized by 



been attended with the probable de- 
•tmction of a considerable portion of 
the army :— Thete are thet»nly points 
on which any difference bf opinion 
can exist. 

It it true, indeed, that in the instruc- 
tions sent by Lord Wellington to Ge- 
neral Murray, there is the following 
passage :-— ^ It must be understood, 
however, by the general officers at the 
head of the troops, that the success of 
^1 our endeavours in the ensuing cam- 
paign will depend upon none of the 
corps being beaten oi which the ope- 
rating armies will be composed ; and 
that they will be in sufficient numbers 
to turn the enemy, rather than attack 
them in a. strong position ; and that I 
thmll forgive any thing, excepting that 
otie of the corps should be beaten or 
dispersed.*' By what ingenious argu- 
ments this passage can be fairly quo- 
ted in defence of Sir John Murray, it 
was difficult, said his accusers, to dis- 
cover ; scarcely, indeed, was it applica- 
ble at all to the circumstances in which 
he was placed. The meaning appears 
obvious : Several of the Spanish corps, 
k is well known, were composed of 
Faw levies, not to be depended upon 
when opposed to veteran troops, n\ore 
especially when the latter were assist- 
ed by position. It was also a matter 
of notoriety, that many of the previous 
£iilures of the Spaniards had arisen 
from their generals not being sufficient- 
ly impressed with this unpleasant truth ; 
but, on the contrary, suffering their 
veal and confidence to get the better of 
their prudence. Thus they continual- 
ly risked general actions, which ought, 
except in cases of decided advantage 
and superiority, to have been most 
carefully avoided. On the other hand, 
the only advanta^ which die Spaniards 
possessed, was m the superiority of 
their numbers. The instructions^ there- 
fore, looking to the real sUte of af- 
£urs, appear naturally to prescribe, as 
a general rule m csrrying on the caou 

paign, that advantage should be ta- 
ken of the circumstances which were 
favourable, and those errors avoided^ 
the fatal effects of which had been 
already but too often expenenced. It 
was Lord Wellington's object to use, 
and at the same time carefully preserver 
that superiority of numbers which the 
Spaniurda then enjoyed, and which the 
defeat and dispersion of any of their 
corps would have destroyed^— Howr 
then does the passage apply to the 
circumstances in which General Mur* 
ray was placed ? How does it tpply, 
as a defence against a eharge for not 
having risked a general action, when 
the result would have been attended 
with glory and benefit to the cause of 
the world then at stake ? Giving it, 
however, all due weight, how can it 
Account for the perseverance in the 
siege without object— for the conse- 
quent losses incurred— ^or the delay in 
coming to the decision of re-embarking 
that which was uselessly exposed on 
shores— for the want of previous ar- 
rangement^for the improper haste 
and confusion attending the re-embark- 
ation when the measure was at last 
finally decided upon-— and for the sub- 
sequent delay on the coast, and the re- 
landing of the army ? Next to the loss 
of a whole corps, the lots of the e- 
quipments of an army, the loss of gun8> 
stores, and ammunition— the loss, in 
part, of the means of carrying on those 
sieges, which, in the general scope of 
the instructions, were evidently con- 
templated in the course of the cam- 
paiflrn, was of the utmost importance ; 
su(m losses were scarcely less embar- 
rassing than the loss of a corps, more 
en>ecially when the infinite difficulty 
of replacing them in Spain is dnly con- 
sidered ; and according to the true 
meaning of the paragraph which has 
been quoted, they ouefat to have been 
most cautiously avoided. This pro- 
position, although not literally expresa- 
ed, must in all faipneaa be cooaidened 

Digitized by 


Chaf. lo*] 

HISTORY oif tumors 


as implied in tlie tptrit oiF tke irntnic- 
Mat ; and tlie intentiont of the com* 
mander of the forces should hate ope^ 
nited as die strongest inducement to 
emploT every precatition» and to act 
wim ttie utmost »ea! and actt^ty, for 
ihe prevention of scch disasters. But 
admitting for a moment that not only 
tlie refusal to give battle^- but the 
hasty re-emharluition also, and the 
material lossessustainedinconsequencei 
moAt all be mStified by an anxious 
desire to comply with the instructionsy 
bow could Genend Murray do other* 
wise than condemn himself, u^on the 
very same principles, for again, and 
diat ^most immediately and voluntas 
rfly, actings in direct contradiction to 
the same mstructions, according to 
his own in te rpretation of them, by 
placing himself in the same situation 
o€ danger from which he had but Just 
made such sacrifices to extricate him- 
self? This he did also at a time when 
the atrong temptations to run such 
forbidden risks, viz. a wish for the 
preservation of a very material part of 
h» important trust, and the natural 
anxiety which he must have felt to 
preserve the glory of the British arms 
antamished, had altogether ceased to 

Such were the views taken of the 
conduct of Sir John Murray by bis 
accusers. The whole of these import- 
ant but unfortunate transactions were 
afterwards submitted to a court of mi- 
litary enquiry ; by which, after a most 
ample investigation, this officer was 
acquitted of au the charges brought a- 
gainst him, except that by which he was 
accused of having ** unnecessarily aban- 
doned a considerable quantity of artil* 
lery and stores which he might have 
enmarked in safety, such conduct being 
detrimental to the service." This part 
of his conduct was ascribed by the 
sentence of the court to a ** mere er- 
ror in judgment ;" and nothing follow- 
ed upon the decision, as the case did 

aot sppear to the Prince Regent to 
caH for the admonition pointed out by 
the court. 

No Uame conld be attached to mi» 
nisters for the result of this expedition* 
Mar^fois Weflesley took occasion to 
deckre, « that with respect to the force 
from Sicily, he would not now enter 
into the topics which had been a sab« 
ject for consideration on a former oc* 
casion; he would merely observe, that 
the great defect had becQ the wmt of 
a unity of command in the peninsula. 
This defect had been remedied im the 
present camfmgnt and the force at 
Alicant hod hem embarked by Lord 
WeUingkm*$ efdertr and had hmded 
near Tarragona, precUdy moordinr to 
that noik Lord's jdmn* A repoit had 
reached London that this force had 
been defeated. He hoped in God that 
tins report would prove to be untrue ^ 
but when ministers had chosen a fit 
<Hbjfcty had prepared adequate meaasy 
and had applied them in due season, 
they had i&ne all that mu in their 
jio«»pi»— the nest ihey must leave to 
God and to She sword ; and were the 
rumourtopr&oe correct^ he should cer* 
toMy not blame them^^hey had done 
all in their pomer*,** 

General Murray was succeeded in 
the command by Loi^ William Ben« 
tinck, who ordered the troops back to 
Alioant. While Suchet marched to- 
wards Tarraeona, the Spanish generals 
the Duke del Parque, Klio, and Villa- 
campa, advanced from different points 
on Palencia. Suchet, on receiving in- 
trlligence of the re-embarkation of 
General Murray, immediately hurried 
back, in hopes of striking a blow 
against some one of these corps ; but 
they all succeeded in makmg their re* 
treat without loss. 

Lord William Bentinck did not at- 
tempt to renew the expedition against 
Tarragona i but, joining himself to the 
Spanisn armies, proceeded, in concert 
with them, to attack the French forces 

Digitized by 



in Pakncia. What nrntsnce Sachet 
might have made in other circumatan* 
ctBf it is impostible to conjectare ; but 
the triumphant pasnge of the Ebro 
by Lord Wellington kft him no 
choice but to retieat. On the 4th of 
July he evacuated Paleacia, and letired 
towards the Ebro^i leaving garrisons in 
PeniscolayMurviedro^andJjenia. The 
allied army» however, was not detain- 
ed by these barriers ; but, after invest- 
ing the fortresses, it advanced, and 
crossed the Ebro at Pinaras. The 
French having retired upon Barcelona, 
the allies blockaded Tortosa, advanced 
to Villa Franca, and prepared to form 
the siege of Tarragona* Suchet how- 
ever determined on making an effort 
to relieve this place. Uniting to his 
army all the troops which could be 
spared from Barcelona and the neigh- 
bouring garrisons, he assembled a force 
of from twenty to twenty-five thou- 
sand men ; on tht 14th he advanced to 
AltafuUa; and on the 15th drove 
back the advanced posts of the British 
army. Lord Wiluam Bentinck waa 
unable to derive any aid firom General 
Elio, who was blockading Tortosat 
his force was thus inferior to that un- 
der Suchet ; and he had not been able 
to gain any advantageous position. 
He therefore determined to fall back, 
and allow Suchet to enter Tarragona* 
The French general, however, did not 
attempt to preserve the place, or to 
maintain thiar- advanced position ;: ha- 
y'mg destroyed the works, he withdrew 
the garrison, and again retired towards 
Barcelona. ^ 

In the beginning of September, the 
allied army again undertook a^ forward 
movement^ encouraged by the belief 
that a very considerable part of^ the 
French forces in the principality had 
been recently withdrawn. Tfaie re- 
mainder continued at Barcdkuia,. and 

along the LlobrMrat. Lord Bentinck 
therefore established his army at Villa 
Franca, and in the Tillages in its fronts, 
extending as far as the Llobrent. 
mountains. The advance, under Ge- 
neral Sarsfield, was placed in the pass 
of Ordal^a post of very ^reat strength^ 
and commanding the high road trom 
Barodoaa. Intelliji^ce arrived that 
Suchet was collecting his army ;. and 
that 12,000 men had been united at 
Molino del Rey ; Lord Bentinck, 
however, placed such reliance on the 
strength of the position at Ordal, as to 
be under no apprehensions on that 
side. * He conceived the army to be 
assailable only by turning its left, at 
Martorell; but, even suoposing the 
enemy to have suceeded in thatattempt, 
the retreat co\ild still have been effected 
without mo lestation. At midnight of 
the 12th, however, the French attack- 
ed the pass of Ordal, with numbers so 
matly superior, that the Spanish corps 
defending it was driven from its posi- 
tion, surrounded, and forced to save 
itself by dispersing among the moun- 
tains. A considerable number of pri- 
soners, and four pieces of cannon, fell 
into the hands of the enemy. The 
British army immediately broke up» 
and set out in full retreat towarda 
Tarragona, closely pressed by the ene- 
my. The British cavalry in the rear» 
however, though far inferior in num- 
bersy covered the retreat by its gallan- 
try i and the army arrived without 
loss in front of Tarragona* 

As it was ]iid^ expedient that the 
grand effort a^inst France should be 
made on the side of the Western Py- 
renees, the third Spanish armv waa 
deuched to cooperate with Lord Wel- 
lington. The remainder of the troopa 
in tne east of the peninsula continued 
to act on the defensive.^ 

Digitized by 


Chaf. 110 




Spaniih 4ffhirs continued^-^Batties of the Pyrenees. — Fall of St Sebastian^ 
^ Pamphmu^Iwooiion ^France by the Britidi Army. 

Trb ^prand operadont in the north 
o£ Spam were still carried on with the 
most brilliant 8occe89» under the eye of 
Marquis Wellington. The sieee of 
St Sebanian was maintained with ex* 
traordioary Tieour. One of the prin- 
cipal out-works had been already ap- 
proached ; and on the morning of the 
17th of July General Graham deter* 
nined to hazard an assault. The va- 
lour of the troops surmounted every 
obstacle : the place was stormed ; the 
csemy driven aown the hill on which 
it is sttoated ; and forced, after burn- 
ing the viUa^ of St Martino, to with- 
draw precipitately into the town of St 
Sebastian. The ttenches vrere imme- 
diately opened against the body of the 
place, and there appeared a fair pros- 
pect of its being compelled to surren- 

Buonaparte, while occupied with the 
great- contest which he was about to 
wage on die banks of the Elbe, had 
in some measure neglected the opera- 
tions of which the peninsula was the 
theatre. He had recalled thence many 
of his generals, and even Soult, who 
had lone held the chiefcommand* But 
now, vnicn in one short month, his 

grand army had been swept out of 
Spain I when the frontier barriers were 
about to &11, and to leave the finest 
provinces of France itself exposed to 
mvasion, alarm seized him, and he per- 
ceived that this was a contest which, 
even under the most urgent pressure 
of other wars, could not be disregard- 
ed. Of the immense levies which were 
at this time raising, a part was desti- 
ned to fin up the exhausted ranks of 
the army now stationed within the 
French frontier ; and Soult, whose ta-> 
knts appeared eaual to such an exi- 
gency, hastened irom Germany to re- 
assume the chief command. The crista 
was urgent ; and so soon as the orga- 
nization of the army was in any degree 
established, he felt that he was impe» 
riously called upon to make a grand 
effort for the relief of the two fortress- 
es, the reduction of which must give 
a fie^ blow to all the prospects o£ 
French dominion. 

Lord Wellington was at this dbo^ 
ment beset with considerable difficuL 
ties. He had to maintain and to cover 
two sieges^ conducted at a considerable 
distance from each other ; and it waa 
thus impossible to avoid the inconve- 

Digitized by 




nience of diridiiig his army. The P)r. 
reneet indeed afibrded strong posi* 
tioDS ; yet were they unfkfourable in 
several respects to the present ar- 
rangement of hit) force. As they con- 
sist of a number of long and deep val- 
lies, separated from each other by lof- 
ty parallel chains of mountains^ the 
troops who defended these vallies were 
thus in a great measure cut off from all 
communication with each other. The 
enemy could choose the line of his ad- 
vance^ throw his whole force into it, 
and push before him the division by 
which it might be guarded, while the 
other corps, separated by almost im- 
passable barriers, could lend no assist- 
ance. Upon this position of the allies 
Soult founded his plan of operations. 
He hoped by attacking separately one 
of the covering armies, to defeat and 
drive it before him, and then throw 
himself on the flank and rear of the 
other armv. He expected not only 
to relieve tne blockaded fortresses, but 
to drive the whole of the allied armies 
in confusion behind the Ebro. 

Of the two fortresses St Sebastian 
alone was in immediate danger ; it 
seemed probable, therefore, that the 
first grand attack of the enemv would 
be against the force by which this siege 
was covered. Such seems to have been 
the expectation of Lord Wellington 
when he established his head- quarters 
at Lesaca, at a small distance from St 
Sebastian. The two roads leading from 
Pampluna were, however, covered by 
divisions of the British army ; one, 
under General Hill, in the Puerto de 
Maya ; the other, under General Byng, 
on the extreme right, at Roncesvalles. 
Against these troops a very formidable 
attack was directed. 

The British troops were now about 
lo be engaged, almost for the first time, 
in that system of mountain warfare in 
which the French had been hitherto 
unrivalled. Their habits of body and 

diet in a peculiar manner fit them for this 
speciesof operations ; andeverv one will 
recollect howjimportant weretn^advan- 
tages which they acquired in Switzer* 
land by their mountain operations un- 
der Lecourbe. The whole range of the 
movements they had now to make was 
comparatively small ; for the eye might 
from the top of the highest of the 
'mountains have taken in the positiona 
of all the columns of the two armies— 
the positions of above 100,000 men* 
These columns were placed amon^ 
mountains where cavalry could not act, 
and cannon could not be conveyed^ 

The allied armies had possession of 
the principid passes of the mountains. 
In front of Souk, at St Jean Pied de 
Port, was General Byng's brigade; 
Morillo's corps was at the pass ofRon- 
cesvalles ; behind was Sir Lowry Cole, 
with the 4th division, at Piscarret; 
General Picton^s division being in te* 
serve, at Olaque. Between the valley 
of Roncesvalles and the Port de Maya 
there is a large space which does not 
appear to have been occupied by any 
force. To Port de Maya, in the val- 
ley of Bast an, and to Roncesvalles, the 
distance is nearly equal from St Jean 
Pied de Port. The valley of Bastan was 
occupied by General Hill, vrith the se- 
cond division, and by the Conde d'- 
Amaranthe's Spanish corps. On one 
flank were the fight and 7th divisions, 
at Pera, Port de Echelar, and on the 
heights of Barbura ; the 6th division 
was in reserve at St Estevan, on the 
Bidassoa. General Longa extended 
the line of communication from the 
Bidassoa to the Urumea — from a divi- 
sion posted at St Echelar to Sir Tho* 
mas Graham*s, employed before St Se- 
bastian. — Soult had one great object 
in view in the first instance, and to ef- 
fect this he made two motements or 
attacks, the one real, and the other a 
feint. By the first he lioped to secure 
his immediate object^ and by the other 

Digitized by 


Chap. 11.3 



to keep the attention^ and force of hn 
mtagooitts employed in guch a manner 
a« to prerent their disturbing him in 
his operations. From St Jean Pied de 
Port he proceeded in tv^o directions. 
He led on a force of 35,000 men him- 
•elf ; atnd» barsting through the pass of 
RoncesvaOes, he hoped to confound 
hkcDeiny and to reach Pampluna. The 
other part of his anny moved upon the 
loilcy of Bastan, to force the British 
poiitioa at Port de Maya. At these 
tiro points, Roncesvalles and Port de 
Maya, the British force was greatly 
iaferior to that of the enemy. 

Oa the 24th of July Souk atUcked 
in great force the position occupied by 
General Hill, who though driven from 
il at first by superior numbers, instant- 
ly recovered the most essential point 
ii it, and would soon have regained 
the whole. But in the meantime an 
attack on a much greater scale, with 
bctsreen 50 and 40,000 men, was made 
upon General Bvng's position at Ron- 
cesvalles ; and although reinforced by 
another division, under Sir Lowry 
Cole, the allies were at length over- 
powered, and compelled to give way. 
They took post at Zerbiri ; and Ge- 
neral HiU, whose rear was now threat- 
ened, fell back upon Irurita. These 
corpa had thus lost their direct com- 
nninication with Lord Wellingtoa, and 
were left alone to defend the blockade 
of Pampluna agamst tlie overwhelming 
force with which the enemy was pour- 
ing in to relieve it. In these circum* 
stances, two British divisions, with a 
small part of the Spanish force cover- 
ing the blockade, took a position im- 
nediately in front of the place. 

On the 27th, Souk arrived in sight 
of the wails of Pampluna, and inamedi- 
aiely began operations for its relief. 
Not having yet brought up all his 
troops, he contented himself with at- 
tacking a cplumn placed upon a hill, 
which formed an important part of the 

British position ; but a Spanish and 
Portuguese regiment, with the 40th 
British, defended it against all his ef- 
forts. On the 28th another British 
division arrived ; and the enemy, also 
reinforced, began a contest of the most' 
furious character. His main effort Waa 
directed against the fourth division, 
under General Picton ; but the French 
were every where repulsed, unless at 
one point, where a Portuguese batta- 
lion having been overpowered, the 
enemy were enabled to establish them-^ 
selves on the line of the allies. Br the 
efforts of some British regiments, now- 
ever, they were driven from the heighta 
with immense loss, and were entirely 
disabled. — In the course of the 28th 
Generals HiU and Dalhousie arrived 
with their dirisions, and placed them« 
selves in line with the rest of the Bri«« 
tish force. — On the 29th andSOth these 
two greet armies continued to Tiew 
each other, neither daring to attack 
the formidable heights on which its 
antagonist was posted. But in the 
course of these days the enemy silently 
withdrew a considerable body of troops 
from the front where the former ac- 
tions had taken place, and moved thent 
to the ri^ht, with a view of attackbg 
the British left under Sir Rowland 
Hill, trusting to the natural strength 
c^ the original position, that the troops 
still remaming would be able to main- 
tain it. On the 80th, accordingly^ 
General Hill was attacked, and obliged 
to fall back from the range of hilll 
which he occupied to the one immedi- 
ately behind. But Lord Wellington 
seeing the enemy's line weakened, in- 
stantly seized his opportunity ; he de- 
tached Lord Dalhousie and General 
Picton to drive the enemy from the 
formidable heighta on which his right 
and left rested ; and the operation 
having been rapidly accomplished, th^ 
centre advanced to join in the attack* 
These efforts were crowned vrith the 

Digitized by 


188 EDINBURGH ANNUAL REGISTER, 1815. [Chap. 11^ 

most brilliant success* and the enemy, 
driven from one of the strongest posi- 
tions which it was possible tor troops 
to occupy* were soon in full retreat to* 
wards their own frontier. To cover 
their retreat they placed a strong rear- 
guard in the pass of Donna Maria* 
&om which, however, it was driven by 
Lord Dalhousie. The retreat now re- 
sembled a flight ; many prisoners were 
brought in, and a large convoy with 
baggage was taken at the town of 
Ehzonda. The French endeavoured, 
however, to make another stand at the 
Puerto de Echalar, immediately within 
the Spanish frontier i but two of their 
divisions were driven from these heights 
in the most brilliant style, by a single 
British division ; and Soult wa» com« 
pelled reluctantly to abandon the ob- 
ject of all his exertions. 

Thus terminated these g^eat con- 
flicts." How different was the result 
from that expected by the French ge- 
neral, may be discovered by attending 
to his prodamation to the army on ta- 
king the command. In this address 
he states, ** that he had been sent by 
the emperor to the command of his 
armies m Spain ; and that his imperial 
majesty's instructions and his own in- 
tentions were, to drive the British a- 
cross the Ebro, and celebrate the em- 
peror's birth-day in the town of Vitto- 
ria." It so happened, however, that 
the Prince of Oran^ arrived in Lon* 
don with the intelhgence of the ene* 
my's having been driven into France 
on the very day which they had fixed 
for celebrating their own triumphs. 

Soidt expected not only to relieve 
Fampluna, but to fix himself again on 
the Ebro, and unite with Suchet's 
army. That he should so soon have 
collected a force of 70,000 men — the 
niXmber engaged in the late battles^— 
njght appear extraordinary; but it 
must be recollected that the armistice 
in the north was signed the day before 

the battle of Vittoriaf and as troops 
were not immediately wanted in Ger- 
many, many divisions which must 
otherwise have been sent thither, were 
dispatched to the frontiers of Spain^ 
where hostiUties were still carried on^ 
and the danger was most pressing. 

Much speculation was now excited 
as to the future operations of the Bri- 
tish commander. Some affected to 
doubt whether he would enter Fruice^ 
while others conceived this step to be 
the necessary result of his prenona 
operations. A descent into the sou^ 
of France seemed to be advisable in 
every point of view, military as well ar 
moral-— fftt^'tory, because while the al» 
lies remained on the Spanish side of 
the Pyrenees, the enemy must alwara 
have had the power of attacking tne 
different passes, while it must nave 
been impossible for them, unless thej 
established a post in France, to ascer- 
tain his movements — what reinforce- 
ments he received— -or what projects he 
had in contemplation : morale becaaae 
Buonaparte had always represented 
France as a country not expoaed to 
invasion : *< the sacred country," which 
none of her antagonists dared to enter i 
but when the people of France found 
a British army in their own territories 
this circumstance, it was thought, most 
abate very much their pride and confi- 
dence in their arms. When they saw 
an invading army in Francey theyt 
could have no doubt of the failure of 
their projects upon Spain ; and the al- 
lies might then say to them with truth* 
See the result of your treacherous at- 
tempts against this fine country : his- 
tory does not furnish an instance of 
greater crime, an example of mote in- 
famy, than this invasion of Spain. Bat 
nuu*K the results— the uaburied booea 
of half a million of your countrymen 
whiten the valleys and mountains of the 
invaded country, and yet you have not 
been able taeffirat your purpose* Spain 

Digitized by 


Chap. II.] 



has been wretted from your grasp, 
and a BritiBli army has come to turn 
die eTih of invanon against yourselves. 
—Such, it was said* must be the moral 
advantages of the invasion of France. — 
The measure, besides, could be attend- 
ed with no hazard to the invader. Sta- 
tioned on this side the Pyrenees, Lord 
Wellington could have no apprehension 
ibr hit rear while he commanded the 
passea; and if he had done nothing more 
dan occupy the country to Bayonne, 
he would not only have wounded the 
pride and weakened the character of 
the French ffovemmeat, but he would 
have been Mt, if he had chosen, to 
make the south of France provide sub- 
sistence for his troops. 

How bitter were the disappoint- 
ments which the French had already 
sustained, was apparent from a variety 
ef circumstances. The proclamation 
which Soult addressed to the troops 
on tadciog the command, and which has 
already been noticed, seems to prove 
that tne French armies had lost much 
of their ardour in the course of this 
peninsular war, and required every sti- 
mulus to encourage their exertions. — 
In this curious document there was 
mnch pnmiise of what the genera! 
would effect himself, with the usual 
sprinkliRfiT of French fedsehood. Souh 
lad the foUy to assert what no one 
conld bdSeve — that the British army 
was much superior in tiumbers to that 
of the enemy when it advanced to the 
DouTO ; he added, however, that a good 
general might have ** discomfited this 
motley levy.'' Timorous and pusilla- 
nimous couBcSi, however, he says, 
were followed ; fortresses were aban- 
doned ; the marches were ^orderly ; 
and a veteran army was conipetled to 
yield all its acquisitions. Of the bat- 
tle of Vittoria he says, that the re- 
•uh would have been different had the 
general been worthy of his troops, al- 
though be confesses that the disppsi* 

tions of Lord WelUnfjrton were prompt^ 
skilful, and consecutive ; aad that tlie 
valour and steadiness of the British 
troops were admirable. He desired 
his soldiers not to forget, however, that 
It was to the benefit of their example 
the British owed their present military 
chai-acter. This was certainly true ; it 
had been to the example the French 
afforded Europe of being invariablr 
beaten when they hazarded a battle with 
British troops, that the latter owed 
their present military character. Lord 
Wellington and Lord Nelson were in- 
debted for their reputation to an unin- 
terrupted series ot victories over the 
land and sea forces of France ; and no 
•mall addition had been made b^ this 
very Soult to the militarr character of 
the British general and nis armies.— 
After this censure of his predecessor, 
and boast of what he would effect him- 
self — after threatening to drive the 
British across the Ebro, and date his 
dispatches from Tittoria, what had 
Soult been ahle to do against this 
« motley levy,** which a skilful gene- 
ral might easily have discomfited ? The 
very same thing that Jourdan had done. 
Jourdan was beaten and driven out of 
Spain ; and nobody could affirm that 
the fate of Soult was very different. 

The efforts of the enemy in the field 
had proved unavailing to avert the 
downhJl of their fortresses. At St Se- 
bastian, however, they had displayed 
more than their usual dexterity in forti- 
fying the place ; but a breacn having 
been effected, the assault was ordered to 
take place at day -break of the 15th. 
The storming party, (about 2000 
men,) were ordered to assemble in the . 
trencnes, and the explosion of the mine 
was to be the signal for advance. The 
uncovered approach from the trenches 
to the breacn wds about SOO yards 
in length, before an extensive front of 
works, and over very difficult ground, 
consisting of rocks covered with sea* 

Digitized by 


190 EDINBURGH ANNUAL REGISTER, 1815. [Coap. 11. 

weed and intermediate pools of water. 
The fire of the place was yet entire, 
and the breach was flanked bv two 
lowers, whkh, though considerably in* 
jured, were still occui>ied. 

At five in the morning the mine was 
sprung, which destroyed much of the 
counterscarp and glacis, and created 
astonishment in the enemy posted on 
the works near to it. They abandon- 
td them for the moaenty and the ad- 
vance of the stormingw party reached the 
breach without much resistance. When 
they attempted to ascend the breach, 
however, the enemy opened a destruc- 
tive fire, and threw down a profusion 
of shells from the towers on the flanks, 
and from the summit of the breach. 
The assaulting party returned into the 
trenches with the loss of nearly 100 
snen killed, and 400 wounded. The 
advanced euard, with Lieutenant Junes, 
who led them, were made prisoners on 
the breach, axid Lieutenant Colonel 
Sir R. Fletcher was wounded at the 
same time in the trenches. — This assault 
does not appear to have failed from 
want of exertion > but because the fire 
of the place had been left entire, and 
the distance of the covered approaches 
irom the breach was too great. The 
troops are said in the Gazette to have 
done their duty ; but it was beyond 
the power of gallantry to overcome 
the difficulties opposed to them. Sir 
T Graham's words are, "notwith- 
standing the distinguished gallantry of 
the troops employed, the attack did 
not succeed. The enemy occupied in 
force all the defences of the place which 
looked that way, and from which, and 
all around the breach, they were en- 
abled to bring so destructive a fire of 
frape and musketry, flanking and en« 
lading the column, and to throw over 
so many hand-grenades on the troops, 
that it became necessary to desist from 
the attack. Though this attack has 
failed, it would be great injustice not 

to assure your lordship that the traops 
conducted themsdves with their usuial 
galUntry, and only retired when I 
thouffht a further perseverance in the 
attack would have occasioned a useless 
sacnfice of brave men." 

The breach having thus proved inn- 
practicable, all the operations of the 
siege were to be recommenced; the 
repulse of the French army, however, 
kU the allies at full liberty to cany 
them on. Their first object was to 
cut off the conamunication which the 
besieged carried on by sea with the 
coast of France ; and Sir George CoU 
lier, with a party of marinesi stormed 
the island of Santa Clara, which liea 
at the mouth of the harbour, and took 
the garrison prisoners. New breach- 
ing batteries were, in the oiean time^ 
raised and carried forward with suck 
vigour, that on the Slst of August it 
was determined to make another at* 
sault The result of this, however, ap- 
peared in the first instance to be very 

The coluoBOs for the assault nooved 
out of the trenches, and in a few mi- 
nutes after the advance of the forlorn 
hope the enemy exploded two mines, 
which destroyed part of the walls, but 
as the troops were not in very close 
order, nor very near the wall, their loss 
was not great. From the Mirador 
and battery del Principe^ on the castle^ 
the fire of grape and shells was opened 
on the columns, and continued while 
they were disputing the breach. The 
main curtain, which had been com- 
pletely breached, was strongly occu- 
pied by grenadiers | the left branch of 
the bom-work was also well-manned ; 
a heavy fire was maintained on the 
breach, great part of which was expq- 
sed ; but a tower called Amezquita« 
on the left, was fortunately not manned. 
By the extremity of the curtain the 
breach was accessible ; but the enemy's 
position there was coromaadiog, afid 

Digitized by 


Chap, llj 



the aacent much expoied to the fire of 
the besieged. Bdund the breach was 
a perpendicular hR from 15 to 25 
feet in depthy under which wcdq the 
rains of the houses* and part of the 
walls ttiH left at intervals^ by which 
alone it was possible to desooid. A 
line of retrenounei^ycarried along these 
roinst was strongly occupied by the 
^aaaj, and entirely swept the confined 
sommit of the breach. 

The storming parties advanced to 
the breach^ and remained on the side 
of it without ascending the summit, as 
they were prevented by the heavy fire 
from the entrenched , ruins within* 
Many desperate efibrts were made to 
gain the summit without effect ; fresh 
troops were sent on successively* as 
fsst SIS they could be filed out of the 
trenches ; and 500 Portugnese, in two 
detachments* forded the river Urumea* 
neaur its mouth, under a heavy fire of 
g^raupe and musketry. 

The greatest difficulties had thus 
preaented themselves after the troops 
nad got to the breach, *^ Never was any 
thing*'' says Sir Thomas Graham* ** so 
falladous as its external appearance. 
Notwithstanding its great.extent* there 
was but one point where it was pos* 
sible to enter* and there by single files. 
All the inside of the vrall* to the 
right of the curtain* formed a per- 
pendicular scarp of at least 20 feet 
to the level of toe streets* so that the 
narrow ridge of the curtain itself* 
formed by the breaching of its end and 
front* was the only accessible point* 
During the suspension of the opera* 
^ns of the siege* from want of ammu* 
nition, the enemy had prepared every 
means of defence which art could de- 
vise* so that great numbers of men 
were covered by intrenchments and tra- 
verses in the horn- work— -on the ram- 
parts of the curtain— and within the 
town opposite to the breach* and ready 
to pour a most destructive fire of mus* 

ketry on both flanks of the approach 
to the top of the narrow ridge of the 
curtain. Every thing that the most 
determined bravery could attempt was 
repeatedly tried in vain by the troops« 
who were brought forward from .ths 
trenches in succession. No man out* 
Hvcd the attempt to gain the ridge ; 
yet a secure lodgement could never 
have been obtained without occupying 
a part of the curtain." 

The breach was now covered with 
troops remaining in the same unfavour* 
able situation* and unable to gain th< 
summit : upwards of two hours of con- 
tinued and severe exertion had elapitcd^ 
On the instant Sir Thomas Graham 
adopted a new expedient ; he ordered 
the guns to be turned against the cur- 
tain. It was manifest that unless this 
could be done with almost unexampled 
precision, the assailants must have suf* 
fered more severely than their enemies 
—for the fire* to be, effectual, must 
have been elevated only a few feet above 
the heads of our own troops in the 
breach. But it was directed with ad- 
mirable precision, and proved effectual* 
By a happy chance a quantity of com.* 
bustibles exploded within the breach* 
and the French began to waver ; the 
assailants made fresh efficnts i the A* 
velin and left branch of the horn- work 
were abandoned by the enemy ; the 
entrenchment within the breach was 
soon deserted by them, and the assail* 
ants got over the ruins and gained the 

The troops being now assembled in 
l^reat numbers on the breach, pushed 
into the town ; the garrison* dispirit- 
ed by its severe loss* and intimidated 
by the perseverance and bravery of the 
assailants, was quickly driven from all 
its intrenchments (except the convent of 
Teresa,} into the castle. From the su« 
perior height of the curtain— a circum* 
stance of which Sir T. Graham had so 
promptly availed himself* the artillery 

Digitized by 




in the batteries on the riglit of the 
Urumea were able to keep up a fire on 
that part during the assault ; and as 
the aitillery was extremely weU senred, 
it occasioned a severe loss to the ene* 
By, and probably produced the ezplo* 
sion which led to final success. 

The assailants had upwards of 500 
men killed^ and 1500 wounded ; of the 
garrison, besides those who were killed 
and wounded during the assault, 700 
were made prisoners in the town. Of 
the engineers, Lieutenant-Colonel Sir 
K. Fletcher, Bart. CapUins Rhodes 
and Collier, were killed ; Lieutenant- 
Colonel Burgoyne, and Lieutenants 
Barry and Marshall, were wounded. 

So soon as the town was carried, 
preparations were made to reduce the 
castle. The plan of attack was to erect 
batteries on the north of the town, and 
breach some of the main points of the 
defences of the castle. The town, 
which had been on fire ever since the 
assault, from the quantity of ammuni- 
tion and combustibles of all sorts scat- 
tered around, was now nearly con* 
sumed ; and the flames had proved a 
great impediment to carrying the ap> 
proaches forward. The encmy^s fire, 
however, had been nearly silenced since 
the assault ; and the roofs of the remain- 
ing houses and the steeples were pre- 
pared for musketry, the fire of which 
was to opey when the assault on the 
castle should commence. 

The batteries opened on the castle 
from the left of the attack. The fire 
was extremely powerful and well di- 
rected, ploughing up every part of the 
confined space of the castle : the ene* 
my kept concealed chiefly in little nar- 
row trenches, which they had made 
along the front of the heights, but 
they lost many men. A white flag 
was at last hoisted, and the garrison 
surrendered prisoners of war :— -its 
numbers had been reduced to 80 offi- 
cers and 1756 men, of whom 29 offi- 

cers and 51a men were m hospitaL-.^^ 
There were expended by the besie- 
gers in these, operations, more than 
70,000 shot and shells, and upwards of 
500,000ibs. of gunpowder^ 

From the account which has been 
given of this siege, it must be evident 
that the defence of breaches made and 
stormed under such circumstances it 
so very advantageous, that against an 
intelligent governor, and a brave garri- 
son, accident alone can give the assault 
a tolerable chance of success. As the 
fire of the batteries is entirely directed 
to breaching, the enemy's troops, pre- 
viously to uie assault, sustain little or 
no loss ; and as their front is restricted, 
it can be fully occupied, while a suffi- 
cient number of men remain to form 
strong reserves; The assailants have no 
help &om their woHcs, and depend for 
success entirely on their own exertions ; 
while the hei^t of situation, with the 
difficulty of ascent up the ruins of the 
wall, give a decided superiority to the 
bestead. Butif, in addition, the breach 
be well intrenched, and the governor 
has made use of the precautions re- 
commended in every treatise on de- 
fence, by covering the approach to the 
breach, and preserving a powerful flank 
fire, both du^ct and vertical, to play 
on the columns during the struggle, 
no conceivable superiority of courage 
over a brave enemy wiU counterba- 
lance such advantu^. It is no dis- 
paragement, therefore, to the troopa, 
that they fadkd in the first assault on 
the 25th of July, and succeeded on the 
Slst of August, in a great measure by 
the unexpected accuracy. of fire from 
distant batteries, and the accidental ex^ 
plosion of the enemy's shelh and am- 
munition, which gave their heroic ex- 
ertions a chance of success. Had the 
contest been merely that of man to 
man, the result would not have remain- 
ed long doubtful— for the troops car* 
ried the breach and gained the sununit 

Digitized by 





at the first nulu Tht French, who 
•ecm to have expected thwy endeayour- 
ed to render the further advance of the 
aisailanta impracticable, and to concen- 
trate auch a fire on the spot as to make 
it ioipossible to remain exposed to it^ 
while the confined space of the sum- 
taat of the breach prevented the assail- 
ants from usmg any cover against its 

The events of this day are highly 
hoiioufable and encouraging to the 
Bc^ah soldier, as they prove that 
wlien hir labour aids his courage by 
carr3ring the approaches completely to 
the wau, and when the assaiut of the 
bicach is duly supported by a close 
fire from the trenches, his success is 
eosared. The advantaffes must then be 
all on his side ; and how shall a few 
woro-out and diq^irited men, exposed 
to a murderons fire every time they at- 
tempt to stand up, resist the attack of 
enemies elated with success, and requi* 
riDg* only one effort more to crown 
their labours* The old and tried maxim 
on this subject cannot, however, be too 
much attended txy^^** at a sieope never 
to attemptany thing by force which can 
be obtained by labour and art/* The 
regular mode of gaining a breach is so 
certain, so simple, and so bloodless, 
that it is much to be preferred to any 
odiery and forms so advantageous a 
contrast to the open assaults in Spain, 
maided by fire mm the trenches, that 
there are few who vnll not regret the 
inability of the British army to have 
adopted it on all occasions. 

Sook made another unsuccessful ef- 
fact about this time. A force, chiefly- 
Spanidi, was drawn up along the left 
bank of the Bidassoa, in a position 
whidi covered all the approaches to 
St Sebastian. As the enemy occupied 
the height which overhangs the op- 
posite banks, and which he had forti- 
fied with cannon, he could command 
at any point the passage of the river. 


On the mombg of the Slst, the rerf 

day of the storming of St Sebastian^ 
he crossed in great force, and attack- 
ed the Spanish troops posted on the 
hills at a little distance. The attack 
was repulsed at once in the most gal* 
laat manner, and repeated attempt! 
had uniformly the sam^ result. In the 
afternoon, having still the command of 
the river, the French passed over aa 
additional body of troops, which, join« 
ed to the former, made a new and des^ 
perate attack on the Spanish positions. 
They were instantly driven back in the 
same prompt and gallant manner as for- 
merly ; and the enemy, losing all hope^ 
entirely withdrew his troops. Lord 
Wellington, who had not hitherto plai 
c^ full confidence in the Spanish 
armies, posted a British division on 
each of their flanks ; but their own va- 
lour was equal to the occasion, and no 
aid was necessary. This day, in shorty 
may be considered as finally retrieving 
the tarnished reputation of the Spa* 
nish arms* 

When the French made tlus attempt 
to penetrate by the high road to St 
Sebastian, they about the same time 
crossed the Bidassoa higher up, with 
a view of gaining the 'place by a cir« 
cnitous route through Oyazznn. Thev 
attacked a Portuguese brigade, which 
was stationed at that place, and whichy 
though reinforced, Was unable to main* 
tain the position, but fell back up^n 
another, which equally covered St Se- 
bastian. The enenty finding ^ his 
atten^pts fruitless, withdrew behind the 
BidasKoa. The immediate fall of the 
fortressrenderedit unnecessary to make 
any further efforts. 

Some discussions of an unpleasant 
nature took place about this time be* 
tween Lord Wellington and the Spa-* 
nish government, liis lordship had 
advanced into Spam in the confidence 
and with the understandBne, that the 
army of that country should be placed 

Digitized by 




under the command of officeri, on 
whose co-operation^ he conld rely. 
He had particularly stipulated, tKat 
the chief command of the provinces 
dirough which he was to pass, and 
of the armies levied from them, should 
be entrusted to Castanos, an officer, 
not perhaps of very shining abilities, 
but of great worth, integrity, and 
candour. The dignity of his charac- 
ter, and his concihatoqr manners, ren- 
dered him an admirable instrument 
for conciliating the British and Spani* 
mrds. It was in this capacity Lord 
Wellington wished to emjdoy him. 
While the Gallician army was Mj led 
by Geqeral Giron, Castanos went 
through the provinces, maintaining or- 
der, and forwarding supplies. An ad- 
ministration unfriendly to him having 
come intp power, took advantage of 
his military inactivity to remove him 
from the cenunand which he held ; 
while other chaoses were made, contra- 
ry, as Lord WeUin^on conceived, to 
tne engagement originally entered into 
with mm, and without his advice or 
concurrence. Such conduct to such 
a man, and a man to whom Spain was 
so deeply indebted, can admit of no 

i'ustificauon. Lord Wellington, in a 
etter to the Spanish minister of war, 
remarked, that the local situation of 
the 4th army prevented it% being form- 
ed into a corps, at the head of which 
the captain-general could be placed, 
with any re^rd to propriety, con- 
sidering the dignity of his office,-— that 
on this account, and at his (Lord 
Wellington's^ request. General CasU- 
nos placed his head-quarters with his 
lordship's and those of the Portu- 
ffuese army,— that General Castanos, 
besides commanding the 4th army, 
was captain-general of Estremadura, 
Castile, and GalHcia ; and tiiat among 
the duties of that high office was that 
of establishing the Spanish authorities 
in the different districts and cities 

which the enemy was evacuating, m 
duty which Castanos could not have 
discharged had he been literally at the 
head of the 4th army, — that it was 
hinoself and not Genersl Castanos, who 
su^rested the propriety of his ezceU 
le^y being employed in this manner,— 
that the conduct of the Spanish go* 
vernment in this respect was a direct 
breach of the contract which had in- 
duced him to take the comoMuid of the 
Sj>anish armies, that, however greit 
his desire might be to serve the Spaniab 
nation, he could not submit to such 
injurious treatment, and that die con* 
tract must be f nlfilkd, if it was desired 
that he should retain the command.— 
His lordship also complained of the 
removal of Genoid Giron without any 
reason assigned. But although Lord 
Wdlington in the first instance ad-^ 
dressed this letter to the regency, he 
had the magnanimity not to suffer his 
private wrongs to intetiere with his 
^erdons for uie public cause, and con- 
tinued to conquer for the nation i^ick 
thus mjured him. 

Every thbg now indicated the in- 
tention of the British commander to 
cross the Pyrenees, and to carry the war 
into the heart of France ; this measure 
was delayed only until lus rear should 
have been secured by the fall of Pam» 
pluna. In the meantime it appeared 
expedient to Lord Wellington to croae 
the Bidassoa, and drive the enemy frona. 
the posts which he was fortifying be»> 
hind that river. 

The left of the allied army cmsed 
the river on the 7th October, in front 
of Andaye, and near to Montagne 
Verte. The British and Portuguese 
troops took seven pieces of cannon on 
this part of the line, and the Spanish 
troops, who crossed the fords above the 
bridge, one piece. At the same time 
Major-General Baron Alten attacked 
the light division at the PuerU De 
Fera, and Don P. Giron attacked the 

Digitized by 


Chap. 1L] 



y's entrenchments on the motin- 
taiD of La Riuna. These troops car* 
lied c?ery thing hcforc them until ther 
arrived at the foot of the rock, whicn 
prored inaccessihle. On the morning 
of the 8th| the attack was renewed on 
die right of the enemy's position by 
the same troops^ and the point was 
iDStaiitly carried in the most fiTdknt 
naimer. The enemy then withdrew 
from all parts of his position.— The ob- 
ject waa now accomplished ; France was 
catered ; and that conntrTy which, for 
twenty years, had never been trodden 
by hc«tile foot, now saw a mighty in- 
vadiofr army established within its 

A new epoch in the war was now 
edebrBted,---a victory had been gained 
by a British general and army within 
the French territories. How many 
leflections crowded at once upon the 
aund ! About ten years before. Great 
ftritaiD was arming her whole popula- 
tiofi to resist a French invasion, and 
ao^ her troops had invaded France* 
la 180 S no man doubted that a descent 
ott the British shores would be attempt- 
ed ; and the legislature was exclusively 
occupied in devising the means of re* 
pcBtngit* In 161 S, almost the first pro- 
ceeding of the legislature when it met, 
was to rote thanks to the brave troops 
who had defeated the enemy upon his 
own temtories, and established a Bri- 
tidi anny on the fields of France. In 
180S, Buonaparte had constructed an 
inmenae fleet of boats within 25 miles 
af the British coast ; the means of in- 
vasion, the troops to be employed in it, 
were visihle daily from our own shores. 
In tSIS, when the naval force of 
France was destroyed, her fleets rot- 
ting in ber ports, her colonies gone, 
her trade nnoed, her projects baffled, 
ber armies beaten in every encounter—- 
when ber troops had been driven out 
af Portugal, driven out of Spain,— 
tUt nma England, once destined for 

destruction, was raised lo the high- 
est pitch of glory ! In 1805, the ra- 
risians were amused with the exhibi- 
tion of some old tapestry, represent- 
ing the successes by which Williaok 
I. obtained the government of Eng- 
land ; and the casual finding of this 
relic was hailed as the omen and fore- 
runner of other atchievements on the 
same ground. In 1813, the Parisians 
were studying the operations of these 
very British upon their own plains of 
Gascony ; while, instead of the French 
flag waring rictorious upon the banks 
of the Thames, the Bntish standard 
was advancing in triunoph to the bor- 
ders of the Garonne. — oase must have 
been the mind which did not exult 
over such a scene of glory !— No thirst 
of conquest had directed the career of 
England — no desire of enlamng her 
territories led her on to batt& ; — but 
the ambition of doing good—the de- 
sire to rescue a natron from its oppres« 
sors, had nerved her arm* For this 
holy object, and in this sacred cauWf 
she fought and conouered. Spain and 
Portugal were saveo — ^and France, the 
invader and oppressor, was herself de- 
feated and invaded* 

On the Slst of October, Pampluna 
surrendered after a blockade of four 
months. The garrison became pri- 
soners of war,*and all the artillery and 
stores were given up. — ^^Nothing there- 
fore now detained Lord Wellington 
from pushing his rictorious career mto 
France ; and the enemy, who had so 
lately aimed at the entire subjugation 
of tik peninsula, sought only to de- 
fend the approaches oT his own terri- 
tories. He formed two successive 
lines of defence ; the one along the 
river Nivelle, the other immediately in 
front of Bayonne. These lines, ever 
since the battle of Vittoria, he had 
been diligently employed in fortifying, 
and untilhe was driven from them, the 
British could not advance into the in- 

Digitized by 


196 EDINBURGH ANNUAL REGISTER, 1815. [Chap. 11. 

tenor of the kingdom. The better 
to provide for defepce, a decree had 
been recently issued^ by which a new 
levy of 50,000 conscripts was to be. 
drawn from the provinces immediately 
bordering on the Pyrenees ; and the 
reinforcements derived from this source 
were already assembling. 

Lord WeUington^s advance was de- 
layed for a few days by the heavy rains 
and the bad state of the roads ; but on 
the 10th of November, the whole army 
was brought forward, and was enabled 
to commence its attackupon the French 
entrenched position along the Nivelle. 
The right of this position was on the 
Spanish side of the river, in front of 
St Jean de Luz, while the centre and 
left extended along the opposite bank, 
and occupied the villages and moun- 
tains situated in this vicinity. The 
right had been fortified so stronj^ly 
that an attack in front was judged im- 
practicable ; but it could be turned, 
if the centre were forced to give wajr. 
Against the centre therefore the mam 
attack was directed. It was conduct- 
ed by three British and one Spanish 
division ; and, after a desperate resist- 
ance, the enennr were driven from all 
the strong and fortified positions which 
they occupied on the left of their cen- 
tre. The Heights on the Nivelle being 
t)ius carried, and the enemy's centre, 
driven back, Lord Wellington imme- 
diately directed troops to advance upon 
the rear of their right ; but before this 
movement could be completed night 
intervened. The enemy took advan- 
tage of the darkness to emit their fine 
posidons and retire upon jBedart, leav- 
ing the whole ground which they had 
occupied in possession of the allied 
army. — ^As the affairs of this day con- 
sisted wholly in the storming of en- 
trenched positions, ' and lasted from 
day-light till dark, the loss was neces- 
sarily considerable. It consisted of 
2500 British and Portuguese killed 

and wounded, betides Spaniards, of 
whose loss no regular account has been 

The enemy now retired into his last 
line of defence, which was formed by 
the entrenched camp in front of Bay- 
onne. The left occupied the penin- 
sula formed by the confluence of the 
Adour and the Nive, whence it com- 
municated with the army of Catalonia ; 
the right and centre extended from 
the left bank of the Nive to the Adour 
bebw Bayonne; and the front was 
here defended by an impassable moimse. 
Lord Wellington, on surveying a po- 
sition thus defended by nature and arts 
judged it impregrnable against any di* 
rect attack. A movement to the right 
to threaten the rear of the enemy, and 
his communication with France, seem- 
ed to aff^ord the only chance of success* 
Operations were again delayed by the 
condition of the roaids; but on the 8th 
of December, Generals Hill and Be- 
resford were, in conformity with Loird 
Wellmgtsn's plans, directed to cross 
the Nive with two divisions. 

The only serious operation on the 
9th was the passage of the Nive at 
Cambo and ifsturitz by Sir Rowland 
HiU and Sir Henry Clinton, ^Hio 
obliged the enemy to retire from the 
right bank of the river towards Bay- 
onne. While this operatioa was pro- 
ceeding, another division of the vmj 
attacked and carried the villa^ fk 
Ville Tranche and the heights in the 
vicinity; Meanwhile Sir John Hope* 
with the left division, after driving in 
the out-posts at Biaritz and An^et, 
and reconnoitring the right of the ene- 
my's entrenched position, retired in 
the evening to the ground he had oc- 
cupied before the reconnoisaace. •— The 
effect of the first day's operations was 
to clear the ri^ht bank of the Nive. 

The oi>erations of the 10th com- 
menced with a movement bj the right 
of the allied umj^ under Sir Rowland 

Digitized by 


Chap. Il.J 



Hilly who, moving his right from the 
Nive, placed it on the Adoury his left 
leaning at Villa Franche on the Nive# 
-—He thus kept up the communi#> 
cation with the centre under Marshal 
Beresford, which was removed from the 
right to the left of the Nive, to be 
ready to sustain the left wing under 
Sir John Hope, upon which the enemr 
meditated hu main attack. A bn- 
gmde of dragoons, and Murillo's Spa- 
vaA division, meanwhile observed and 
occupied the force under General Pa- 
ris» which had moved from St Jean 
Pied de Port towards St Palais, to be 
in readiness to support the operations 
of the enemy on tne Adour. 

Soult was aware, that unless some 
vigorous measures were taken to ar- 
rest this movement, his position must 
soon become untenable. Not onlv 
must he lose his communication witn 
France, bat the navigation of the A* 
dour, by which his snpphes were trans- 
mitted, must fall into the hands of 
the British. He determined instantly 
vpon the most vigorous operations.— 
His project vns to attack with his 
whole foree that part of the allied 
army which had not passed the Nive, 
and thus induce the British general 
to recall his advanced divisions. 

Soult issued from his entrenched 
camp with all his foree, except that 
which was opposed to Sir Rowland 
HiU, and made a desperate attack 
upon Sir John Hope's and General 
Alton's divisions at [Biaretz and Arcan- 
que^ His great object, as already men- 
tioned, was to compel the British to 
abandon a position which gave them 
the command of the sea-coast, and of 
the road from St Jean de Lnz— -an 
attempt, which, if successfuly might 
have rendered it necessary for them, 
not only to quit the banks of the Nive, 
but also to repass the Nivelle, and fall 
back to the Bidassoa. Soult, how- 
ever, failed completely in this attempt. 
The termination of the action was 

marked by the defection of the Dutch 
and German regimer>ti of Nassau and 
Frankfort, which came, over to the 

The 11th was marked, by no opera- 
tions of much importance. The ene- 
my's grand army remained in front of 
the fintish left, and madq some attacks 
in the afternoon upon Sir John Hope's 
posts, but was repulsed with loss. 
The right and centre of the allies were 
not attacked. — On the 12th, the ene- 
my a^ain attempted to drive the Bri- 
tish right from its positions, and the 
conflict lasted from the moniing till 
the afternoon ; but beinf again re- 
pulsed, he retired within his entrench- 
ed camp, and abandoned all thoughts 
of making any impression in this 

On the 13th, Soult resolved to 
make an entire change in his opera- 
tions. Having shewn so much per- 
tinacity in his attacks against the Bri- 
tish left ; having, by so many efforts, 
produced, as he thought, a firm per- 
suasion in the mind of Lord Welling- 
ton, that his whole attention would stul 
be directed to this quarter, he deter- 
mined to move his whole force sudden^ 
ly through Bayonne, and fall upon the 
British right, under Lieutenant-Gene- 
ral Sir Rowland Hill. This deter- 
mination does credit to the skill of 
Soult ; but he found in this instance, 
as he always did before, that he had to 
contend with a general who antici- 
pates every movement of his antago- 
nists, dives into all their plans, and 
prorides for every emergency. Lord 
Wellington expected this attack, and 
reinforced Sir Rowland Hill. But it 
appears that even if his lordship had 
not entertained this expectation, Soult 
would have failed in his attempt ; for 
Sir Rowland HilPs troops alone de- 
feated the enemy with immense loss. 
Thus beaten at all points, the French 
retired upon their entrenchments. 

Such was the issue of these con- 

Digitized by 



flictt, which lasted five da^s* The crowned the operationB of an mriny.— . 

loss on both sides was considerable ; The measure of Britain's glory was al- 

but the success of the allies was com- ready full ; but the labours of her war- 

plete» and they established themselves like sons were not yet terminated -— 

firmly between the Nive and the A- The annals of succeeding years were 

dour.— Thus was the liberation of the still to be adorned by their exploits^ 

peninsula accomplished in the course until the odious despotism which had 

of this eventful year, by a series of t|ie threatened Europe with chains, should 

most brilliant successes that have ever fall prostrate betore them. 

Digitized by 


Chap. 120 




Siaie ^A0Uri m the North^-^Progress of the Rusrian' Armies after the Exjml" 
skm Hif the French from the Empirc-^Prussia johu the AtUamoe agaimt 
F'rMce.^Ffeparatiom ef the French for reemdng Military Operatiotu. 

Th-b Tctrat of the French from the 
Berema to the Nlemes, lad from the 
Miemeo to the Vistub, was one conti^ 
■ned iceoe of dtmairy route, tad con* 
fodon. The ooftaou hotered conti- 
noBlly oo their rear, and were able, 
not indeed to arrest die retreat, but to 
lender it nnifermly disaitrout, and to 
destroy emy thing nHuch for a mo- 
ment aeMrated itmlf from the main 
body. The wings of the Russian ar- 
my followed dose on the flanks of the 
enemy, and by threatening to inter- 
pose betwe e n the f agitives uid France, 
rendered it impossible to pause for a 
moment at any swgle point* Buona- 
parte had directed that a stand shonld, 
if posaible, be made for a few days, 
atWilna« which formed the grand de- 
pot of the army, and was filed with 
sopplies of every kind. Could this 
haife been efiFected, the troops might 
hare breathed from their fatigues, and 
their order and efficiency might have 
been in some BEieasure re-established ; 
bnt scarcely had they, by a succes- 
sion of marches^ through tracts nearly 
impassable, succeeded m reaching that 
important place, when they found 

themselves surrounded by the Russian 
oohmons i there was no choice, there* 
fore, but to huny on with the utmost 
cderity.— Without pausmg at Wilnat 
the Russians continued the pursuit.— « 
Oneodunm under Wittgenstem march* 
ed alongr the Niemen to cross at Til- 
sit I while another under Platoff pur* 
sued the enemy tkmg the direct route 
through Kowno. The French had en- 
trenched themselves strongly at this 
place I and they hq)ed9 hy defending 
the passage of the Niemen, to have 
obtained a short respite. Platoff^ how- 
ever, hentated not a moment: he threw 
himself upon the frozen Niemen, and 
the cossacKS were soon on the opposite 
bank. The French hastily crossed the 
river m two columns ; but were not able 
to avoid the attack of the cossacks, 
who destroyed great numbers of thenu 
The pursuit continued as before, with 
the daily capture of prisoners, cannon, 
baggage, and ammunition. Accord- 
ing to accounts published by the Rus* 
Man government, the number of prison* 
ers taken since the battle of Borodioo» 
already amounted to nOfiOO men, of 
whom 1298 were officers, and 41 ge- 

Digitized by 



nerals. ^ To this sUtement was added 
1131 pieces of cannon. Europe stood 
aghast at this estimate, — ^never before 
bad she witnessed such destruction* 

The Russian goTemment was deter- 
mined to complete the work which it 
bad begun ; and for this purpose or- 
dered new and extensive levies. — " Rus- 
sia,'* said the emperor, " having been 
invaded hy an enemy, leading armies 
^m almost every- European nation, 
had been obliged to make great sacri- 
fices $ and aluough, by the aid of Di- 
vine Providence, those armies had been 
entirely dissipated, and their poor re- 
mains were seeking safety in a preci- 
piute Aight, Yet it became necessary 
\^ maintain, the glory of the empire 
by. such a militancy establisbmcQt as 
should insure permanent safety. The 
prm of the giant was broken, but his 
jdetftruciive streTigtb should be prevesl^ 
ed.from reviving ; and his pQwer otec 
t^ Bfttions, whp serve jbim out of ter4 
^or, taken away. .Russia^extensiret 
nch» and. pacific, sought no conquests, 
frwidied not to disp^ of thnoiies^-^ 
She desiied ttaaquiUity for herself, 
a^ for alL She would not, however, 
an&r the wicked so to abuse her mo* 
deration, as to endanger -the wdl-betn|^ 
«f herself or other nations* Painf^ 
«a it call upon a loyal and af- 
fffltbnate, people for new exertions, 
yatit wouldbe still more painful to 
see them exposed to calamities for the 
#ant^ an adequate de&nce ; and that 
the apst gfrievous calamities would re- 
sult from the success of her 1^ inva- 
ders, was evident fraai the enormities 
thty bad already committed* Theem<» 
peror trusted m God and his btave 
iannies, wbteh could be raised to an 
imposing Dumber, for the preservation 
of what had bc«n purchased by so 
flwoy labours a»d sacrifices."— In con- 
aeqoence of these resdatioas, it waa 
ordered— that there should be a gene- 
nl levy throughout the empire, of 

eight men out of every 500 ; and that 
the levy should commence in each go* 
vemment within two weeks, and end 
in four, from the publication of the 

When the Russian armies in their 
victorious promss reached tho Pms* 
sian frontier, me commander in chiefs 
^utusoff, explained the views of hia 
government in an eloquent address.-^ 
<< At the moment of my ordering the 
armies under my command," said he» 
<^ to pass the Prussian frontier, the em- 
peror, my master, directs me to declare 
that this step is to be considered in no 
other light than as the inevitable con* 
sequence of the mSiitalry opi^taikmib<^ 
Faithful to the principles which h^ve 
a^qated his oonguct a^^'all times, his 
imperial majesty is guided by no view 
of conquest. The sentiments of mo- 
deration which havetever characterised 
biS: policy, are still the saaie, after the 
deotsive suooessea wikfa mback Dtvine 
Providence has biassed his legitimate 
efforts. Peace and indepefidence shall 
be Uieir result. These his insfcsty of* 
fers, togethec with his assistance, to 
every people, who^ beinfir at present 
Migcd to oppose him, waU abandon 
the cause of Napobon in order to puo* 
sue their real interests. linvite then 
to take advantage of the fortunate 
openiog which the Russian armies have 
p«oduced, and to unite themselves with 
them ia the parsuit of an coemy^ whose 
nrectpjltate flight haa discovered hia 
loss of power. . It is to Prussia in ear- 
Ucukr.tbis.inntatton is addressed.—* 
It ia the inttntioaof his insperial ma« 
jesty to put an end to the calamitifa 
by which she is <^retscdr-*to deaion- 
strate to her king the friendship which 
he preserves for him,— and to restora 
to the monarchy of Frederick iu edat 
and its extent. He hopes that hia 
Prussian majesty, animated by senti* 
meots which tnis frank declaration 
ought to produce, will^ under such cir- 

Digitized by 


Cbav. 1&] 



Uke thftt p«tt wirich the 
jtie r ot of fait states demands. Un> 
dcr tins coATktioOy the emperor» my 
■MBter, has sent me the most positive 
orders to avoid every thio^ that could 
betray a spirit of hostility between the 
two pofpers, and to, endeavomry within 
the Prussian provinces, to soften, as far 
as a state of war will psrmit, the eHh 
whicb for a short time most reHuU from 
dieir occupation." 
- « When Russia was compelled, hy a 
sp«r of aggression,'' said the emperor, 
••to tske arms for her defence, from the 
aocoracy of her comhinattons, she was 
cBabkd to form an estimate of the ini* 
portant resahe which that war a^lit 
produce with respect to the i^epen- 
denoe of Europe. The most heroic con* 
stBDcy, die greatest saerifiees, have led 
to a series of triumphs. At no period 
has Russia heen accustomed to practise 
tbat art (too much resorted to in mo* 
dem wars) of exaggerating, hy felse 
statenieats, the success of her arm»« 
Bat with whatever modesty her deta^ 
flright BOW be penned, they would ap« 
pear incrediUe. Those vrho have vnt« 
acssed them can alone prove the facts 
to France, to Germany, and to Itatyi 
before the dow progress of truth will 
fiB those oountries with mournine and 
oonsteroation. Indeed, it is difficult 
to conceivev that in a campaign of only 
four flsontfas duration, 180^000 prison- 
ers should have been taken from the 
enemy, 49 stand of colours, and all the 
waggon*train and baggage of the ar* 
By. It is sufficient to say, that out of 
900^000 men (exclusive of Austrians) 
who penetrated into Russia, not S0>000 
of trom, even if these should be favour- 
ed by fortune, vrill ever revisit their 
coniitry. The manner in whidi the Em- 
peror Napoleon repassed the Russian 
titontier can assuredly be no longer a 
secret to Europe* So much glory, and 
so many advantages, cannot, however, 
change the personal disposition! of the 

Emperor of Russia. The grand prin- 
ciple of the independence of Europe 
has always formed the basis of his 
poHcy ; for that policy is fixed in hk 
neart. It is beneath his character to 
permit any endeavours to be made to 
induce the people to resist oppression* 
and to throw off the yoke ^nich has 
weighed them down for twenty years. 
It IS their governments whose eyes 
ought to be opened by the actual si^ 
tUation of France. Ages may elapse 
before an opportunity, equally favour- 
able, again presents itself;, arid it would 
be an abuse of the goodness of Provf- 
dence, not to take advantage of thii 
crisis to accomplish the great work of 
the equilibrium of Europe, and there- 
by to insure public tranquillity and 
hidividual happiness/' 

One passage in this address appears 
singular :— ** It is beneath the cnarac^ 
ter of the emperor to permit any ett- 
d^vours to be used to mduce thepeO" 
fh to resist their oppressors, 3tc.,^' as 
if it had not been^o the constancy and 
ci&ttrage of the ^ Russian people the em- 
ptror was now indebted fq/r hh crown^ 
and the triumphs by which he was so 
much elated. It is beneath the 4ignitT 
of any honourable mind, indeed, to s^^ 
mulate the people to acts of violence and 
fotly ; but surely the Emperor Alexan- 
der could not think that the resistance 
which he so strenuously encouraged, 
participated in any dej^ree of this cha- 
racter* He was therefore urging what 
iras lawful, honourable, and expedient ; 
and why should the people be deemed 
unworthy of Such exhortations ? To 
the people alone can they ever in such 
circumstantes be with efficiency ad- 
dressed ; and had thei/ not felt the ge- 
nerous enthusiasm of national honour 
and independence, the despotism of 
France would hav^ defied every other 
shock. Far different from the views of 
the Emperor Alexander were the senti- 
ments of the British ministers, some sf 

Digitized by 



the mostdistingiiished of wliomfraiikly 
avowedy in the legislaturet that to the 
popularity of the war they ascribed its 
great and brilliant results. But it were 
absurdy perhaps, to expect any thing 
like a kindred feeling on such subjects 
in Russia and in England. 

Another address, which the Rusnan 
emperor made about this time to his 
own subjects, is less escceptionable, and 
paints in strong colours the merciless 
progress of the invader — ^his final over* 
throw— and the patriotism and devo* 
tion of the Russian people.-—^ The 
world," sai4 the emperor, ** has wit* 
sessed with what objects the enemy 
entered our dear country. Nothing 
could avert his malevolence; Proudly 
calculating on his own armies, and on 
those which he had embodied against 
OS from all the European powers, and 
hurried on by a desire of conquest and 
thirst for revenge, he hastened to pe* 
oetrate even into the bosom of our 
great empire, and to spread amongst 
us the lM>rrors of a war of devasta« 
tion. Having foreseen, by former ex* 
amples of his unmeasured ambition, 
and the violence of his proceedings, 
what bitter sufferings he was about 
to inflict upon us, and seeing him 
already pass our frontiers, with a 
&ry which nothing could arrest, we 
were compelled, though with a sor- 
rowful and wounded heart, to draw th# 
sword, and to promise to our empire 
that we would not return it to the 
•cabbard so long as a single enemy 
remained in arms in our territory. We 
fixed firmly in our hearts this de- 
termination, relying on the valour of 
the people whom God has confided 
to us ; and we have not been decei- 
ved. What proofs of coura^, of pie- 
ty, of patience, and of forUtude, has 
not Russia shewn ? The enemy who 
penetrated to her bosom with all hts 
characteristic ferocity, has not been 
*able to draw from her asingle sigh by 

the severe vrounds he has ittfiicted. It 
wopld seem, that with the blood whidt 
flowed her spirit of bravery increased t 
that the burning villages animated her 
patriotism, and the destruction and 
profanation of the temples of God 
strengthened her faith, and nourished 
in her the sentiment of impbcable re* 
venge. The army, the m^Hlity, the 

SfBtry, all estates of the empire, nd* 
er sparing their property nor their 
lives, nave breathed the same spirit— -> 
a s|»rit of courage tnd of piety,a lovw 
ardent for thdr Uod and for their conn* 
try. This unatamity, this, universal 
zcslf have produced «£EiecU hardly-cne* 
dible, and such as have scarcely exist* 
ed in aay age. Let os contemplate 
the enormous force collected tma 
twenty kingdoaM and nations, united 
under the same standard, by an ambi* 
tious and atrocious enemy, flushed 
with success, which enter^ our cona* 
try ; h^ a million of soldiers, infantry 
and cavalry, accompanied by fifteett 
hundred pieces of cannon. WithfiNxea 
so powerful, he pierces into the heart 
of Russia, extends himself, and benna 
to spread fire and devasUtioii. But 
six months have scarcely elapsed since 
he passed our frontiers, and what has 
become of him i We mar here dte 
the words of the Holy Psahnisfe— -<* I. 
myself have seen the uagodly in great 
power, and flourishing like a green bay 
tree.-»I went bj, and lo, he was gone t 
I sought him, but his place comd no 
where be found.'* This sublime sen^ 
tence is accomplished in all its force 
on our arrogant and impious enemy. 
Where are his armies, like a mass of 
black clouds which thc^wind had drawn 
together ? They are dispersed as rain. 
A great part staining the earth with 
their blood, cover the fidds of the go* 
vemments of Moscow, Kalugra, Smo* 
lensk, White Russia, and L it huania. 
Another part equally great, has been 
taken in the frequent battles with nuu 

Digitized by 


Chap. If.] 



2^ generak aftd comHuuiderf. In Bat f 
ter numerous bloody combau» whole 
regiments imploriDg the fnagnanimity 
of their conqueron^ have hud down 
their arms* The re^ composing a 
number equally greats, pursued in their 
precipitate flight by our victorioua 
troops, overtaken by cold and hunger, 
have strewed the road from Moscow 
to the frontiers of Russia, with car* 
Cftsses, cannons, waggons* and baggage, 
so tbaty of those numerous forces, a 
veiy inconsiderable part, exhausted, 
and without arms, can, with difficult^jr, 
and almost lifeless, return to thor 
homes, to serve as a terrible example 
to their countrymen, of the dreadful 
fuSerings which must overtake those 
raah men who dare to carry their hos- 
tile designs into the bosom of Russian 
—To-day we inform our well-beloved 
and faithful subjects^ with a lively joy 
and grateful acknowledgments towards 
GoSf that the reality has surpassed 
even our hc^s ; and that what we an- 
nounced at the commencement of this 
war, is accomplished beyond all ex- 
pectation. There is no longer a single 
enemy in our territories, or rather, 
there they all remain ; but in what 
state i Dead, wounded, and prisoners. 
Even their chief himself has, with the 
utmost dilBculty, escaped with his prin- 
cipal officers, leaving his army disper- 
sedy and abandoning his, cannon, of 
which there are more than 1000 pieces^ 
exclusive of those buried or thrown in- 
to the water, which have been recover- 
ed, and are now in our hand&^-This 
scene of destruction surpasses all be- 
fie£ We almost imagine that our eyes 
deceive os. Who has been able to ef- 
fect this ? Without derogating from 
the merited glory of the commander- 
in-chief of our armies, this distinguish- 
ed general who has rendered to his 
country services for ever memorable, 
and without detracting from the merits 
af other valiant and able command- 

ers, who have distingiariied t&cmselvea 
by their seal and ar£>ttr, nor from the 
general bravery of tbnr troops, we 
must confess, that what they have ac» 
complished surpasses all huinan power* 
^^Acknowledge, then. Divine Fravi* 
dence in this wonderful event* Let ua 
prostrate ourselves before his sacred 
throne, and acknowledging his divine 
hand chastening pride and impiety, in* 
stead of boasting and glorying in our 
victories, let us learn from this great 
and terrible example to be modest and 
peaceable executors of his law and his 
will : let us never resemble those im« 
pious profiuiators of the temples of 
God, whose carcasses, without num* 
ber, now serve as food for the fowls 
of the air* God is mighty in his kind- 
ness and in his anger* Let us be gui- 
ded by justice in our actions, and pu- 
rity in our sentiments, as the only path 
which leads to him* Let us proceed 
to the temple of his sanctity, and there 
return him thanks for the benefits 
which he has bestowed upoams ; and 
address to him our ardent sappUca^ 
tions that he will extend to us ms par* 
doui— put an end to the war,— and 
grant us victory on victory, until peace 
and tranquillity be firmly re-estaUish* 

The inviutions of Russia to induce 
her neighbours to declare against the 
common enemy, were not unavailing. 
The whole Prussian force, joined to 
about 6000 French, under Macdonald, 
had been employed in the blocki^ of 
Riga ; and the Russian army, in ad« 
vancing to the Niemen, came upon the 
rear of this corps* Macdonald, by 
retreating with the utmost expedition^ 
succeeded in extricating himself; but 
D' York, the Prussian conunander, Celt 
no disposition to make such extraor* 
dinary efforts* He withdrew his 
whole force from the French army^ 
and concluded a convention with the 
RBisiana» by which the Prussian troops 

Digitized by 



were to remain neutral in Eastern Pros* 
•k. The orders which he sent to the 
Prussian general; Massenbasch, who re» 
mained with Macdonald at Tilsit, with 
two batteries six battalions and sir 
squadrons of Prussian troops^ to leavf 
the French and join him were obeyed* 
«* Massenbasch set ofFon the 81st ult/' 
said Macdonald, « without my orders, 
to repass the Niemen. He thus aban* 
dons us before the enemy.** Macdo- 
nald had taken some steps to detain 
the Prussian general and disarm his 
troops ; but the Prussian was aware of 
his intentions, and began his inarch 
without delay. Macdonald could not 
prevent or pursue him. And thus, 
nearly the whole of the 10th corps, 
the only one which had not greatly 
suffered in the last campaign, was de** 
tached from the enemy's service, and 
might in fact be considered as part 
of the force destmed to act against 

General li'York, in a letter to Mac- 
donald, offered some explanation of 
his conduct, and remarked, that ** af- 
ter many painful marches it was not 
possible ror him to continue them with- 
out being attacked op his flanks and 
rear ; it was this that retarded his junc- 
tion, and left him to choose between 
the'altematxveof losipg the greater part 
of his troops, and the materiel^ which 
aione insured his subsistence, or saving 
the whole/* — But other and nobler 
motives impelled him. He wished to 
set an example to the oth^r powers 
whom Buonaparte kept in subjebtion, 
to invjte them to withdraw from sla- 
very, and to break their fetters upon 
the heads of their oppressors. He 
wished to teach a lesson to the Ger- 
mans — ^to sound the alarm^-to rekin- 
dle their ancient love of independence, 
and to arm them against a tyranny 
which had drained their, resources, 
drenched their fields with blood, and' 
carried calamity and ruin into every 

fiimily. ;Hc spoke the language of a 
man who knew that he had acted wcH 
— ♦< he was indifferent," he said, «* about 
the judgement which the world might 
pass on his conduct.'* YetBuonapartej^ 
whose priticipal weapon was treacheiTf 
pretended to be astonished ! — He caU* 
ed upon all soverei^ to unite their 
voices a^^st such'deeds, and to com- 
bine thdr power to prevent a recur- 
rence of them. This defection struck 
him deep ; for he foresaw and fe^ed 
its effects. *< The Prussian people,** he 
said, << will jnd^, and all the nationt 
of the north will judfl^e with them, of 
what misfortunes such a crime' mi^ht 
be the source.^-^The correspondence 
between, General D'York and Mar* 
Shal Macdonald ^as laid before the 
French sfsnate, and imn^ediately follow- 
ed u|>, by a report announcing this dis- 
aster as the motive which induceii 
Buonaparte to issue a senatus consuJU 
turn for calling out 850,000 men.— 1 
Throughout the whole of this report 
England stood prominent ; she had 
been the cause of the Russian war^ 
and of the desertion of the Prussian 
armv.— rSome, and no incon^derable 
merit, indeed,' she might fairly claim^ 
for it was her constancy which Set aa 
example to all Europe— -it was her 
arms and councils which stimulated 
and suported Spain and Portugal-^it 
was her greatness, resources, and love 
of freedom, which first placed a bar- 
rier against the tyrannj of Francie. . 
Macdonald, thus leu with an army 
of 5000, attempted to effect a speedy 
junction with some troops from Ko* 
ningsberg, who with that view came 
out to meet him. They were com- 
pelled, however, to fall back by Gene-, 
ral Steingel, whom Wittgenstein had 
dispatched to frustrate this part of the 
French plan, while he himself closely 

EursuedMatdonald. Tchichagoff,who 
ad also reached the Pregel, advanced 
along the course of the rivers preceded 

Digitized by 


Cbap. 12.3 


by Flatoff with his coitacks, througb 
dumbinnen and Insterbui]? towards 
JLoningsberg. General ochepeleffp 
'who commanded Wittgenstein's van 
guard» reached that fortress bv the 
way of Labau» wh^re the Frencn had 
taken an advantageous, position^ and 
attempted to make a stand. On the 
4th ot January^ a battle took pUuDe 
which continued till noon, when the 
enemy being driven from his position^ 
retreated towards Koningsberg. 

On the 6th of January^ fonin^s- 
berg, the ancient capital o^ Prussiai 
was occupied by Count Wittgenstein's 
advanced guards under the orders of 
Major-Gercral Schepeleff.— Marshal 
Macdonald had ordered the town to 
be occupied hj a corps d^armScf com- 
posed of the old French guardsi and 
acme troops who had escaped the ge* 
neral wreck of the enemy's grand army. 
Bat on the approach of the advan- 
ced guard of the Russians, the enemy, 
without halting, passed by Konings- 
bei^, and abandoned it to Major-Ge- 
neru Schepeleff^ who entered it with* 
out resistance. The French fled in 
confusion towards the Vistula*— *There 
were taken in Koniogsberflr, 1300 pri- 
soners, besides 8000 sicS:, and SO 
pieces of the battering-train from before 
Riga — Count Wittgenstein arrived at 
Koningsberg on the 7th. On the 9th 
he followed the army, which continued 
to drive the remains of the French to- 
wards the Vistula. On the 12th, Ad- 
miral Tchichagoif and Count PlatofiF 
took possession of the fortresses of 
Marienwerder, Marienburg, and £1- 
bing ; and on the following days ha- 
ving crossed the Vistual and the N<^ 
gat, a branch of the same river, they 
pursued the French in diderent direc- 
tions on the roads to Dantzic, Stut- 
gard, and Grandenz. 

When the Russians entered Marien- 
werder, the viceroy of Italy and Mar- 
shal Victor were scarcdy abk to es- 

cape from the coMtcks« General JLa 
Pierre, four inferior officers, 200 me% 
and a courier sent by Napeleon f 
the Prince of Neufchatel with dif» 
patches, were made prisoners. On the 
road to Nuenburg, Lieutenant-Colonel 
Adrianoff, while pursuing the enemjy 
met a squadron ot Baden troops, and 
destroy«l iL Another corps at- 
tempted to make a stand at the /^/e- 
du-pani at Derschoff, about four Ger- 
man miles from Dantaic } a sanguinary 
affiur took place, but the enemy were 
coii^>elled to abandon their post, and 
to retire upon Dantzic^ pursued by 
the Russians. 

While these operations were car^ 
ried on in the neighbourhood of the 
Bdtic, some advances were made 
against the Saxons and Austrians, be- 
yond Warsaw. General Sacken from 
Ruzana, advanced against Reffnier, 
who commanded the Saxons, and Ge- 
neral Wasillchikoff, from Grodno^ 
against Schwartzenburg and the Aus- 
trians. Sacken, on the 2pth of De- 
cember, took possession of the town oi 
Bresoy Litoff, and proceeded thence 
along the Bug to Grannym. WasiU- 
chikoffy having been joined by .four 
regiments of don-cossacks, pursued 
Schwartzenburg alwg the course of 
the Narew ; the Austrian general di- 
viding his corps into three coluoms 
gradually approximated to Warsaw, 
by the way of Ostrolenka and Po- 

The Prussians every where recei- 
ved the Russian troops in a friendly 
manner, and su|>plied them willingly 
with provisions. In return for their 
good conduct, the most rigorous dis- 
cipline was observed to the great sa- 
tis&ction of the inhabitants. — ^The re- 
treat of the French armjes through 
the kingdom of Prussia was, like that 
from Moscow, marked by devastation $ 
and by the abandonment of their ma- 
gazines, tumbrils, and stores of all de- 

Digitized by 



•criptions. Some idea may be formed 
of the migforttines of this retreat, by 
CODiuhing two returnB which were in- 
tercepted of the 4?th French voltigeurs, 
and 6th tirailleurs. The former regi- 
ment, when it left Smolensk, consist- 
ed of 82 officers and 427 privates, of 
whom there remained under arms on 
the leth December, only 10 officers 
and 29 privates; the latter, com- 
posed of 31 officers and $00 privates, 
mustered on the 81st of December on- 
ly 14 officers and 10 privates. 

The Emperor of Russia proceeded 
in the night of the 7th January from 
Wilna, to join the division of his guards; 
and the head-quarters of the whole 
Russian army were at Merez on the 
10th, On the 13th they were removed 
to Ratschky ; and the emperor crossed 
the Niemen on that day, amid the ac- 
clamations of his troops. He continu- 
ed to march with a division of his ar- 
my, in a western direction, through 
Beijuiki, Krasnoplo, and Subalki, to 
Lique, where he established his head 
quarters on the 19th. Generals Mi- 
loradovitch and Dochtoroff, with the 
troops who crossed the frontier at 
Grodno, moved in a line parallel to 
that of the emperor's march on the 
left. Intermediate corps were dhvct- 
ed to keep up the communication be- 
tween each of the columns. 

The situation oi Prussia about this 
thne was very singular. The capital 
was in the hands oTa French garrison ; 
but the inhabitants favoured the Rus* 
•ians, and flattered themselves that the 
king, with the troopt he was collect- 
log in Siksia, would declare against 
their oppressors. What were the real 
intentions of the king, or whether he 
had yet come to a £ci8ion, it seem- 
ed difficult to discover. Throuefaout 
the month of January, Berlin eahibit- 
f d daily scenes of tumult and disorder, 
the populace having risen against the 
Freachf whom they succeed^ in con* 

fining to their barracks. A regencj 
had been established ii^ the name of the 
king, at Koningsbere, of which the 
ex-minister Stein, who had b^n an 
object of French persecution, was the 
president. This regency had issued a 
proclamation, calling on the loyal and 
patriotic inhabitants of Prussia to come 
forward and rescue their king and 
country from French thraldom; nor 
was the caU in vain. The young men 
were eagerly running to arms, and 
joining their brethren under the com- 
mand of General D'York, who had 
been nominated, by the regency, coni« 
mander-in-chief of the patriotic army* 

The rapid advance of the Russians^ 
and the wide extent of country over 
which they were now scattered, proved 
that they were supported by a general 
insurrection. Had the spirit of the 
people been different, the conduct of 
the Russians would have been incon« 
sistent with the most obvious rules of 
prudence. Instead of the line of the 
Vistula, or the entrenched camp in 
front of the Oder, which Buonaparte 
had lately acknowledged as the limit 
of his defonsive operations, his expec- 
tations were now confined to the army 
of observation of the Rhine. 

The head quarters of the Russian 
army, which were on the 19th at Li^ 
que, had been moved forward by the 
26th nearly 120 miles, to Winenbeiy , 
in a direction to the westward of the 
Warsaw road. The Russians had thua 
got into the rear of the Austrian posi- 
tion at Pukusk. Previously to this* 
General Miloradovitch, supported bj 
Winzingerode, had advanced as far aa 
Ptasnitz, the Austrians gradually re- 
tiring before him, and successively 
abandonine Smadovo, Novogrodck* 
and Ostrolenka, on the river Naren. 
Regnier retired to Posen ; Count Wor- 
ranzoff had advanced to Bromberg* 
and made himself master of the large 
magazines collected there by the enc- 

Digitized by 


Chaf. 1^] 



mjf to cover which, ftnd to observe 
TnorD, Geoeral Tchichagoff approach- 
ed the latter fortress. 

The arraBgements of the Russian 
cabiiiet, no leM than the movements of 
the armiesy indicated the most resolute 
hostility to the French system. Count 
R<»stopNchin, the virtuons governor of 
Moscow, was appointed minister of 
the interior of Russia, and the ex- 
Pmsdan minister Stein, whose enmity 
to Buonaparte had caOed forth a fu- 
nous tirade against hiin, was nuuk a 
Russian cabinet minister; Kutusoff, 
Witt|enstein, and their brother eene* 
lals, had the most distbguished ho- 
nours conferred upon them* These 
bmve men had savea their country ; and 
the Emperor Alexander shewed by the , 
most magnificent rewards every dispo- 
sition to recompence their exertions 
against the common enemy. 

A singular event occurred in the 
course of the month of January ; Murat 
gave up the command of the French 
army to Eugene Beauharnois from in- 
disposition, it was pretended, but, as 
everyone believed, from disgust. Buo- 
naparte, in announcing this event, took 
care to state, that Beauharnois was, 
** more accustomed to a grand adminis- 
tratioo," and possessed << the entire 
coofidenc* of tht emperor/' If this 
had been true, how did it happen that, 
at the moment of the greatest difficul* 
ty and perilt when Buonaparte aban- 
dniied his army, he sdected Murat as 
the aiost proper person to conunand 
it ? This general was then thought per- 
fectly competent to a ^ grand admi- 
ntstration*''—— Beauharnois, howevei^ 
was DOW deemed superior, although it 
was difficult to discover that he hade ver ^ 
Astingruished himself in such a way as 
to deserve this eulogy. Had Murat 
been really indisposed, and had the 
aute of his health been the sole cause 
of his retiring from the command, 
Buonaparte would hardly have ac- 
xompaoied the notification of this event 

with such praise of Beauharnois, u 
could not fail to hurt the feelings of 
Murat. But the consequences of the 
Russian campsfign were every way so 
disastrous to the French, that the sol- 
diers were rendered suspicious of their 
officers, the jgenerals became dissatis- 
fied with eacn other, and all of them 
lost then- regard for Buooaparte. 

The accounts ^▼en at this time 
in the French omcial paper of the 
state of the armies, were very sin- 
gular. The Moniteur now spoke 
chiefly of the new troops proceeding 
to the north. Thorn, however, it 
affirmed, was occupied by 6000 men ; 
6000 Prussians were at Graudentz ; 
Davoust commanded a corps of obser* 
vation upon Bomberg; victor and 
Iffacdonald were at Posen ; and Lau* 
riston was to command a corps of ob« 
servation at Magdeburcrh. Another 
corps was also to be estsKlished on the 
Rhine, and an army of observation in 
Italy, under the command of Gene- 
ral Bertrand. From this statement it 
was manifest that Buonaparte expected 
the next campaign to commence un- 
der very different auspices from the kst, 
—in the heart of Germany, instead of 
the frontiers of Russia.— The Moni- 
teur, however, attempted to sustain the 
spirits of the people of France and Ger- 
many— ♦« We are authorised to make 
this expose to tranquillize the good 
citizens of France and Germany.'' 
Thus it appeared that there was much 
discontent produced, in all probabili- 
ty, by the efforts of the British go- 
vernment to inform the people of the 
true state of affairs. 

It became necessary in these circum- 
stances, that Buonaparte should do 
something to trancjuiUize, or at least to 
occupy, the public mind and support 
his tottering power. The pope ac« 
cordingly was once more brought on the 
public scene. After his expulsion from 
Rome, he had been sent to a town on 
the shores of the Adriatic ; thence to 
6 ' 

Digitized by 



Cremona, to Verona, and to Piedmont'; 
Buonaparte ho{^ed» by thus harassing 
an old man, to bend the mind of the 
pontiff tQ his purposes. On hearing, 
however, that some attempt would he 
made to release the holy father, he or- 
dered him to be sent to France, and 
^eed under the police s^t FontamUeau. 
There he remained for some time, till 
the emperor surprised him with a visit 
on the 19th of January of this year. 
Buonaparte and the Austrian princess 
left Paris under pretence of hunting at 
Grosbois, and suddenly proceeded to 
Fontainbleau, ^^ where they were not 
expected/' Buonaparte instantly re- 
paired to the pope's apartments, and 
entered upon the business of his visit* 
From that evening till the 25th, va- 
rious conferences took place between 
them, which ended in the signing of 
a new concordat. The pope nad 
considered Buonaparte's last marriage 
illegal and his issue illegitimate, as 
the former marriage had not been dis« 
solved according, to the canons of the 
catholic church, nor by the special 
permission of the head of that church. 
The nuinner in which the pope had 
been treated had produced a strong 
sensation in France, which, although 
Buonaparte might disregard it du- 
ring the tide of his victories, he now 
felt was no longer to be treated with 
contempt. The proposals, howev^, 
which were now made to the pope, 
were accepted, the territories of the 
church were restored, and the sanc- 
tion of his holiness was obtained to the 
marriage of the French ruler. 

Other measures for sustaining the 
authority of Buonaparte were also 
adopted. A rcffeacy was provided in 
the event of his Stzth during the mino- 
rity of his son. The Austriaq prin- 
cess was named the regent ; she was 
to act with the assistance of a council. 
She and her son were to be crowned— 
a spectacle which, although it ought 

amuse the Parisians fori a day, could 
do little towards consolidating the new 

The legislative body having been 
convoked in the. month of Fmuaryp 
Buonaparte inad^ one of his sbgular 
speeches to them. ' He consoled them 
by an assurance that the British army 
had been wrecked before Burgos, and 
had evacuated Spain.-— But every one 
asked, if the British army had been 
wrecked before Burgos, how happen* 
ed it that the enemy had not ventured 
to make any attack upon it in its ruia- 
ed state? If the allies had entirely evau> 
cuated Spain, why were not the French 
again in possession of the capital of 
Estremadura and of Ciudad Rodrigo ? 
If all the hopes of the English had been 
disappointed and their projects defeat- 
ed, how came it to pass tliat the ene* 
my was not in possession of the fertile 
provinces of Andalusia ?— When allu- 
ding to the Russian campaign, he 
said, that ** he was constantly victo- 
rious at Polotd^, at Mohilo, at Smo« 
lehsko, and Malovraslovitz." At 
Maloyraslovitz ! wnere the Russians 
drove him back to the road which be- 
came the grave of his army ! ** He 
got to Moscow," he said,** tnumphin^ 
over every obstacle, and even the ooii- 
iiagration of that city changed in ao 
manner the prosperous state of his a£* 
fairs." This was in direct contradic* 
tion to his own bulletins (particular- 
ly the 26th) in which he said, ^< that 
alter Moscow had ceased to exist, the 
emperor had determined either to aban« 
don this heap of ruins, or only occupy 
the Kremline— that it appeared useless 
to compromise any thing whatever for 
an object that was of no military value* 
and had now become of no politick 
importance."— •Butafter expressing aU 
due contempt for the Russian arms,— 
after asserting that the Russian troops 
were notable tostand before the French 
army«-*what did Buonaparte now prs« 

Digitized by 


Cbav. 12.] 



powtodo? The object of the war, as 
iTOwed by himielf in hia first bulle- 
tbisy was to dictate to Russia; to 
deprive her of her coosideration and 
her inflnence ; to impose upon her 
h» STStem, and to reduce the Emperor 
of Russia to the abject situation of a 
KiDgof Bavaria. What did the French 
niler now afow to be his object ? To 
nake the Russians return to their own 
country ! ** The Rusdans,'' said he^ 
** ihall return to their own frightful 
dimate 1" Was it for this he went to 
war with Russia ?— *that she might not 
establish her power over Germanj ?«^ 
that she should be contented witn htt 
owainunense possessions ?— Heinvaded 
her territories to conquer her, and he 
was now anxious only that she should 
not invade France. She had destroyed 
the army which he brought a^nst 
her, and burst beyond the limits of 
her own territories | and he would nov^ 
have been fulhr satisfied if her armies 
would have reeved him of their pre- 
sence, and ** returned to their fright- 
fbl dimate!'* 

Bnoni^arte spoke very eenerally of 
his allies. He said, indeed, he ** was 
satisfied vrith all of them-^that he 
would abandon none of them, and that 
he would maintain the integrity of 
their states*"— One parampn in the 
speech shewed the impossmility of ma- 
king peace. *< The French dynasty 
teigna and shall reign in Spain,"— a 
]Mge which, so long as it was per- 
sisted in, cut off all hope of putting a 
period to the war vrith England. 

The Russian armv meanwhile had 
Arrived on the Vistula. The utmost 
deHbetation was required in determi- 
atng the course which it was now to 
foBow. The French possessed alone; 
that river a range of fortresses, which 
commanded its course, and seemed to 
oppose a barrier against the further 
progress of a nortlurn army; Was the 
Jtusoan artey to employ itself in be- 
sieging these fortressesi and thus se- 

TOL. ▼!• rAKT I. 

cure this line of defence against any 
future invasion ? This seemra the most 
prudent plan, and corresponded with 
the established usages ot vrar. But 
the Russians had penetration enough 
to perceive, that much more brilliant 
prospects were opened by the present 
situation of Europe. The remains of 
the French army w^fe too siinall,- sind 
in too complete a state of disornnixa- 
tion and dismay, to oppose any obstacle 
to their victorious progress. It vras 
certain, that as they advanced, every 
sovereign, every country, would re** 
ceive them with open arms ; their force 
would be swelled by the force of all 
thedistricts which they might traverse^ 
the resources of every country would 
be withdrawn from the strength of 
France and added to that of her ene* 
mies. With respect to the danger of lea« 
viog behind them somany strong-holds^ 
the example of the French themselves 
had shewn, that there were circumstan- 
ces, in which what might otherwise have 
been the height of imprudence, became 
^)erfectly safe. The danger, which 
would have been Serious if entering 
into a hostile country, with a power- 
ful enemy in front, ceased to exist 
when the French force was coiiapletely 
broken, and when the whole country 
through which their pursuers vrere to 
pass was enthusiastically devoted to 
their cause. Every circumstance, in 
short, indicated, that the moment had 
arrived for following up, with the ut- 
most vigour, the advantages they had 
gained. Itwould have been madnessto 
pause, until the miehty edifice, which 
for the first time nad been noade to 
totter, should be laid in the dust. The 
Russians therefore determined to ad^ 
vance | and the boldness and vigour of 
this policy, contrasted with the caution 
which had marked their proceedings 
in different circumstances, heightened 
greatly the impression of that wisdom 
by which their councils were guided. 
On the 7th of Fcbruaryi Major-Ge* 

Digitized by 


210 EDINBURGH ANNUAL REGISTER, 1815. [Chaf. 12* 

neral Count Woronzoff marched to« 
Wards Posen with his detachment ; 
whilst Admiral Tchichagoff invested 
the fortress of Thorn, C^ncral Milo- 
radovitch's corps passed to the left 
bank of the Vistula* Major- General 
Paskevitch, with the 7th corps, took 
possession of Sakroczin, and pushed 
forward some cossacks for the purposes 
of observation as far as Modhn. 

The enemy, with the view of obtain* 
ing provisions from the villages about 
Dantzic, made a sally towards Brentau, 
but was immediately received by some 
cossacks, who compelled him to retreat. 
At the same time a strong column of in- 
fanUy and of cavalry ap^red on the 
Russian left flank, opposite the village 
of Nenkau, and at first drove in their 
advanced posts* A cossack chief, na« 
mcd Meimkoff, taking advantage of this 
movement, collected several detach- 
ments of his warriors, rode round the 
enemy's wing, and falling unexpected- 
ly on his rear, threw him into confu- 
•lott i the resuk was, that the whole 
colunm was cut off from the city, and 
not a single man returned into the for- 
tress ; 600 ooen were cut down on the 
spot, and 200 privates and 73 officers 
were made prisoners* 

Prince Schwartzenberg's corps ha- 
ving been forced to retreat, on the 8tk 
of February General Miloradovitch 
took possession of the city of Warsaw* 
On hii arrival at the village of Wilanofl^ 
he was met by the deputies of the cor- 
porations—of the nobility, merchant^ 
and clergy, headed by the prefect, sub- 
prefects, and mayors of the city, who 
presented to him the keys of Warsaw* 
• Mskjor^General Count Sievres, com- 
manding in Koninfirsberg, received or- 
ders ,to march agamst Jnllau, with tJl 
the troops and artillery then in Ko- 
ningsberg, and to summou the French 
garrison to surrender. In pursuance 
of these orders, the general arrived 
with 6000 men and a strong partv of 
artillery, in the village of Old PiBau, 

withb 2000 paces of the fortress : — 
The tro<ms potted thesMdves partly 
in front of this village, and partly on 
the heights situated on the right and 
left of it ; and the Russian general 
immediately sent a summons to the 
commandant of the French gpuiison* 
This measure led to a convention, by 
which the French troops, on the 8tfa, 
quitted the town and fortreM of Ptl- 
lau, which had been ejurisoned by 
them since the month of May, 1812* 
The garrison, which marched out, 
consisted of about 1200 men; the 
number of stck left behind amounted 
to about 400* On the 9th the Rus- 
sian troops returned to the grand armr ; 
the Prussian troops who were in the 
town and citadel remained at a gar- 

The mild and ta^iout poKcy of 
the Rutsiant in entering the provinces 
•f the north at friends and deltverert, 
and lestoring the national function- 
ariet, greatly attisted their exeFtiodt*— 
Their advance was accompanied with 
every circumstance which was calcu- 
latea to endear their cause to the na- 
tions around them«-»They resorted to 
the press as » powerful auxiliary for 
the overthrow of the enemies of Eu- 
rope I they ditseminated friendly ad^ 
dresses over the continent, and their 
conciliatory offers were received with 
joy at Warsaw, Berlin, Hamburffb, 
and Dresden. The press, wUdi had 
been so long fettered by the French^ 
and compelled to ditseaoinate falsehood 
throughout Europe, began, after the 
success of the Russians, to retssume 
its kffitimate functions.— --Wherever 
the aUies carried their arms, this pow- 
erful engine was occupied in exposing 
the mafignant and deceitful policy 
which had been so long pursued by 
the ruler of France* 

The King of Prussia, who felt him- 
self while at Potsdam entirely in the 
power of the French general and grur- 
risoa of BerliPy resolved on obtaiiuog 

Digitized by 


Cbav. 12.] 



kb pertofud freedom hj.n tudikn and 
meKpected renoval to Bretlsw. Ha- 
viii|^ arrived thtxe^ hcf on the 3d of 
February, issued proclamation^ to lus 
sobjectSy callio^ on thenr to arm u sup* 
port of tkeir kmg and country. Tms 
patriotic call was well understood over 
Pnissia» and volunteers from aU parts 
of tbe kbgdom presented themselves 
for enrolment, lufordfied by this sight, 
Beaoharnois, the new commander of 
the Prench armies, forbade the recruit- 
ing enjoined by tbe royid decree. This 
unparalleled affront had no other effect 
than to excite tbe indignation of the 
king and of his people. 

The Attstnans, in the month of Fe- 
bruary, concluded an unlimited truce 
with the Rusttans, in virtue of which 
they withdrew into Ckdlicia ; and the 
SaMns under Regnier profited by 
this circumstance to retire towards 
tbeir own country. On the evening 
of the 13th of F^ruary, however. 
General Winxtngerode came up with 
General Regnier and his Saxons at 
Kalitsch. The enemy directed their 
movenaents upon the dty, to form a 
jnoction with 4000 Poles, who had 15 
pieces of cannon with them I but they 
found themselves suddenly attacked 
by the Russian troops with their cha- 
lacteristic ardour. The result of this 
attack was hisrhly honourable to the 
RossianSy as the Saxon infantry, who 
were in aoperiorl foree, OMde a brave 
sad obstinate resistance. Two Saxon 
itandards^ seven pieces of cannon, the 
SsKon general, Nostitz, three colonels, 
36 oficera and 2800 privates, were the 
trophies of this day. General Win- 
ziagerode's advanced guard pursued 
the enemy^ who retreated upon Raca- 
kowo and Ostrowo. 

In thia state of things, the King of 
Prussia offered hioisdf as a mediator 
hetween the chief belligerents^ On 
the 15th of February, he pfoposed a 
tmcet on condition that the Russian 

tr6o|>s shoidd reti^ behind the Vis- 
tnk and tbe French behind the Elbe, 
leaving Pnissia, and all its fortresses, 
free firom foreign occupation. — ^These 
terms s^m very favouraUe to the bea- 
ten and discomfited enemy, who had so 
ktely threatened to annihilate tbe in* 
dependence both of Russia and PriA- 
sia. They were suUenly refected, how- 
ever, by Buonaparte ; while the Eok- 
peror Alexander, on the cither hand, 
evinced such sentiments of liberality 
toward the Prussian m6toarchy and na<^ 
tion, as could not but insure their cor- 
dial attachment; 

The patriots of Prussia accordingly 
surrounded their sovereign at Bseslaw : 
they represented^ that the moment was 
at length arrived to shake off the de- 
grradilie yoke, to which, in common 
with sdl Germany, their nation had 
been so bn^ subjected i they Wisely 
and energetically insisted, tKat these 
was but .one lint to be adopted^^^^m al- 
liance offensive ami defenlnve with Roll- 
sia— This just remonstranoe at length 
prevailed. On the 8Sd of Febnnry a 
treaty of peace and alHaace, offensive 
and defensive, was conduded betwixt 
the Emperor of Russia and King of 
Prussia, and a system of combined mi- 
litary operatioBfs was arranged. 

The King of Pn»sia,* on thjs occa« 
sion, addreMied hie people and his ar- 
nof^-^** It wacB ttnnecessary," he said, 
<< to render an ac^CoUnt to his good 
people of Germany, of the motives for 
the war which was now commencing : 
they were evident to. impartial Europe* 
Prussia was bowed down under the 
superior power of France. That peace^ 
which deprived the kinff of half his 
subjects, procured uv no blessings ; it, 
on the aontrary,- injured Prussia more 
than war itself. The country was impo- 
verished. The principal fortresses were 
occupied by the enemy; agricultune 
vras neglected, as weU as the industry 
of the cities, which had risen la a very 

Digitized by 



Ugh degree* Liberty of trade beiag 
intemipted, the new system natun^y 
closed all the sources of ease and pros- 
perity* By t|ie most exact obserrance 
of the stipulated treaties* the king ho- 
ped to obtain some alleviation for his 
people, and at last to convince the 
French roler that it was his o wn interest 
to leave Prussia independent ; but the 
long's exertions to obtann so desirable 
an object proved fruitless ^-^-nothing 
but hwightiness and treachery were the 
result. The Prussians discovered, but 
father late, that Buonaparte's conven- 
tions were more ruinous to them than 
open wars. The moment was now ar- 
rived in which no illusion respecting 
their condition could reanin.-^<< Prus- 
sians,'' said the king, ** you know what 
you have silvered d«nn^ the last se- 
ven years. Tou know what a misera- 
Ue fate awaits you if we do not ho- 
nourably finish the war which is now 
commencing. Rememberformertimes ! 
Reooember the iUastriovs Elector, the 
Great Frederick ! Remember the be- 
nefits for which our ancestors contend- 
ed under his directfon t hbertyofcoi- 
•eience, honour, iadnendenoe, trade, 
industry, and knowledge. Bear in mind 
the great example of our allies the 
Rusmnsl Thinlt of the Spaniards and 
Portuguese: small states have even 
gone to battle for simihu* benefiu a- 
gainst a mora pow e rfu l enemy, and ob- 
tained ^ncusrj ! Remember the Swiss 
Mid the people of the Netherlands ! 
Great sacrifices are required from all 
lanks, because our plan is great, and 
the means of our enemy extensive.-*- 
You will make them sooner for your 
country and your king,-than for a fo- 
mgn ruler ; v^, by so many exam- 
ples, has proved he would seize your 
children, and drain your resources for 
desifl^ns to v^hich ycm are strangera.^- 
Conndence in God, constancy, cou- 
rage, imd the powerful assistance of 
eur allies^ will favour our just cause 

with ^tory. How gneat soever the , 
sacrifices which naay be rocjuired from j 
individuals, they are small compared , 
with the sacred interests lor which they 
are given, for which ve combat, and , 
for which we must conquer^ or cease , 
to be Prussians. We are now engaged 
in the last decisive contest for our ex- 
istence as an independent people. — 
There is no nMdium between an ho- 
nourable peace and inglorious ruin.— 
Even this you would manfully support , 
for your honour, because a Prussian 
cannot live without it.— But we dare 
confidently trust, God and our firm 
purpose^ will give our just cause vic- 
tory, and with this an uninterrupted 
peace, and the return of happier times." 

The French ambassador, St Mar- 
8»i, vfho was a spectator of the inter- 
view between the Emperor Alexander 
and the King of Prussia, resolved on 
the following day to present a remoa- 
strance to the Prussian chancellor; He 
was prevented, however, by a note 
froni the latter, formally announcioe 
to him, that Prussia was at war vmh 
France, and assigning the reasons bj 
which he justified her eonduct. A si- 
milar note was presented to the French 
government at Paris b^ Count Kmae- 
marck, the Prussian mmister, to whidh 
an angry reply was made by the Duke 
of Bassano. 

The Prussian mimst^ sUted the 
strongest reasons in just^cation of an 
appeal to arms at the present time* 
and vrfoed with much force and i^iH- 
ty agamst the French system, which 
hid successively led to tlie degradation 
of every sovereign by whom it had 
been adopted : — ^He urged the foUy 
of trusting to any engagements with 
Buonaparte, and theabsflnte necessity 
to which the powers of Europe were 
exposed, of destro^ng his system, or 
being destroyed by it. Prussia, by the 
treaty of Tilsit, in 1807, was left in 
the most feeble condition. It vras easy 

Digitized by 


Chaf. !£.] 



to foresee, tliat hj the occupttion of 
t)ie fbrtreweSf Buoii^>Brte woald be- 
come id effect master of that aountiyt 
and might zvtSi hiimelf of it as aa ad- 
finced post in his future hostilities a- 
gainst Russia* He was not only e^a- 
Ued to exhaust it by grievous ezac- 
tionSf under the name or miHtary con- 
tribationa, but to ruin its &iances by 
that deceitful and io^ious mode oif 
ioipoverishing his neighboorsy which 
he termed the continental system. In 
this wretched situation was Prussia 
placedt when Buonaparte's plans a- 
fpdnst Russia began to be dcToloped. 
Unable to stand alone, her circumstan- 
ces ifid not allow of neutralitT ; and 
•he was unwiliingrly dragged alonff aa 
a vassal in the train of tSe nikr ofthe 
French nation. But even if she had 
not suffered severe oppression in time 
of peace, she was at once plundered, 
trampled on, and insulted, during the 
war. Buonaparte acted over the king- 
dom of Fnissk the sovereign, or rather 
the conqueror, without ceremony or 
restraint. He seized on Pillau and 
Spandan by a sort of military surorise } 
he kept possession of Glogau and Cus» 
triR, m express opposition to treaties : 
he subsisted his garrisons in those pla- 
ces by levying contributions for ten 
kaguea arotmd ; he seized no less than 
80^)00 horses, and ^OOO carriages | 
together with every other article of 
which his commissariat happened to 
stand in need ; and be even sent or- 
ders to General Bulow to join Vk> 
toi^s corps without consulting the 
King of Prussia on the subject. These, 
aad numy other equally serious grounds 
of complaint, were distinctly recapi- 
tolated by Count Krusemarck in his 
officiad commnntcatiDn to the French 

TheDukeof Bassano, in reply, be- 
gan by a sarcastic allusion to the ver- 
latile politics of the Prussian cabinet 
«noe 1792} at if France^ since that pe- 

riod, had not exhibited more mmeroua 
instances of fickleness and falsehood 
than any other power. He stated that 
it was against Buonaparte's^/ie/iiiigt to 
declare war merely for political conve* 
nience ! He would have made Prussia 
a mediator between France and Rus» 
sia; *<and would have consented to 
aggrandize for the interest of lus sys- 
tem, and for the peace and repose of 
the world, wkMk formed his sole view^ 
a power, whose sincerity had been pat 
to the proof." Buonaparte would have 
agprrandized Prussia ! ** made her act 
a fine part,'' and manifest decided sen- 
timents } << but," said the Duke of 
Bassano, << he did not suspect the da* 
plicity of a power which had solicited 
the honour of an alliance with France." 

While the diplomatic arrangementa 
wei^e concluded between Russia and 
Prussia, the commanders of the French 
armies in vain attempted to make a 
stand at Berlin. The inhabitants ma- 
nifested a spirit no" less formidable to 
them than that of the army } and the 
Frmch themselves confessed, that the 
Russian light troops which approach* 
ed Berlin, were conducted and reinfoT'- 
ced by the young ooen of that capital ; 
severu of whom were killed in the 
skirmishes which took place in the sub* 

Very different from the conduct of 
the King of Prussia was that of the 
misguided sovereign of Saxony. The 
approach of the Slied armies alarmed 
him, and he determined to quit Drea* 
den, aad to cling to the interests of 
the common enemy. Before abandon- 
ing his capital, he issued a proclama- 
tion recommending a peaceable de« 
meam>ur to his subjects. lie told them» 
at the same time, that the political 
system to which he had for the last six 
years attached himself, was. that to 
which the state had been indebted for 
its preservation amid the most immi- 
nent dangers. This was strange lan- 

Digitized by 



guage, when hit adherence to this very 
political system now compelled him to 
abandon his capital. 

General Blucher, however, took a 
different view of the interests of Saxo- 
ny, and addressed from Bruntzlau, a 
proclamation to the people, stating 
that he entered their territory to offer 
them his powerful assistance, and call- 
ing on them to raise the standard of 
insurrection against their oppressors. 
His language on this occadon was sin- 
gular and characteristic: — ** In the 
north of Europe,*' he said, " the Lord 
of Hosts has neld a dreadful court of 
justice, and the angel of death has cot 
off 300,000 of those strangers by the 
sword, famine, and cold, from that 
earth which they, in the insolence of 
their prosperity, would have brought 
under the yoke. We march wherever 
the finger of the Lord dh'ects us, to 
fight kr the security of the ancient 
thrones and our national independence. 
With us conies a valiant pec^le, who 
have boldly driven back' oppression, 
and with a high feeling have. promised 
liberty to the subjugaM nations. We 
announce to you the morning of a new 
day. The time for shaking off a de- 
testable yoke, which, during the last 
six years, dreadfully crashed us down, 
}ias at length arrived. A new war un* 
luckilT oAnmenced/and still more un- 
happily concluded, forced upon us the 
peace of Tibit ; but even of the seve* 
rest articles of that treaty, not one has 
been kept with u?. Every following 
treaty increased the hard conditions of 
the preceding one. For thi# reason we 
have thrown off the sham^efnl yoke, 
and advance to the heart-cheering com- 
bat for our liberty. Saxons I ye are 
a noble-minded people ! you know, 
that without independence all the good 
things of this lif& are to noble minds 
of little value, — that subjection is the 
greatest disgrace. You neither can nor 
will bear slavery any longer. You will 
not permit a cunning and deceitful 8ys« 

tern of policy to carry its ambitious 
and depravea views into dSect, to de- 
mand the blood of your sons, dry up ^ 
the springs of your commerce, depresa 
your industry, destroy the liberty of 
your press, and turn your once happy ' 
country into the theatne of war. Al- 
ready has the Vandalism of the oppres- 
sive foreigner wantonly destroyed your 
most beautiful mooument of architec- 
ture, the bridge of Dresden. Rise I 
join us: raise tne standard of insurrec- 
tion against foreign oppressors, and be 
free. Your sovereign is in the power 
of foreigners, deprived of the freedom 
of determination^ d^oring tl^ steps 
which a treacherous policy forced hun 
to take. We shdl no more attribute 
them to him than cause you to suffer 
ferthem. We only take the provinces 
of your country under our care, whea 
fortune, the superiority of our arms* 
and the vabur of our troops, may 
place them in our power. Supply the 
tvasonable wants of our warriors, and 
in return expect from i}s the strictest 
discipline. Every application to me, the 
Prussian Genenll,maybefreelymadeby 
all oppressed persons. I will hear com- 
plaints, exanune every charge, and se- 
verely punish every violation of disci- 
pline. Every one, even the very fnean- 
est, n»y with confidence approach me^ 
I will receive him with kindness. The 
friend of German independence will* 
by us, be considered as our brother s 
the weak-minded wanderer vire will lead 
with tenderness into the ri^ht road ; 
but the dishonourable, despicable tool 
of foreign tyranny, I vrilJ pursue to 
the utmost rig^our as an enemy to our 
common country." 

Prussia now becameone great camp ; 
the supple instruments of French ty« 
ranny were banished from the cabinet, 
and the generals known by their reso- 
lute opposition to French influence, 
wert invested with new and effectual 
powers. The whole country between 
the Elbe and the Oder was divided in- 

Digitized by 


Chap. 12.] 



to four miliUiy districU, uoder the 
Goamiaiid of L'Estocq, Tauenzien, 
AfaMeobachy and Gotzen ; the mili- 
tia was called out ; the levy-en-masse 
was ordered ; volunteers enrolled them- 
•elves on all sides ; no less than 20,000 
of the militia were collected at Ko« 
ningsberg ; and the national enthusi- 
asm was uuiversallj directed to one 
great object. 

The King of Prussia, on the 20th of 
Marchy ISIS^ published an edict, abo- 
lishing the continental system, and re- 
golatiog the duties to be collected in 
fatore on goods imported into Prus- 
sia. All French goods were prohibit- 
ed under severe penalties. 

The French troops havingquitted 
Berlin, the Russian General, Tchemir 
cbeff, arrived in that city amid a great 
concourse of people: — ^the Russian 
troops were received with kindness and 
bospit^jty. On the 11th of March, 
Count Wittgenstein made his public 
entry into the capital, and was receii- 
ved with the greatest enthusiasm. 

The torrent from the north rolled 
on ; the barriers of the Vistula and the 
Oder proved inefficacious to stem it. 
The accession of Prussia and Sweden, 
and the great armaments which were 
prq>aring in the north of Germany, 
•welled the single power of Russia in- 
to a formidable confederacy. The fide- 
lity of all the foreign troops in the 
French service was suspected by Buo* 

naparte; and it appeared that they 
would embrace the first opportunity of 
deserting. In these circumstances he 
thought it necessary to make an addi- 
tion, even to the immense preparations 
which he had already contemplated.-* 
Ninety thousand men of the conscrip- 
tion of 1814, who had been originally 
destined for the reserve, were now ren- 
dered disposable.; and ninety thousand 
more were raised by a sort of retro- 
spective conscription. The cities and 
municipalities were inrited to equip 
new corps of cavalry, to replace that 
part of the armv which had entirely 
perished during tne Russian campaign. 
Buonaparte, however, was aware wat 
he could not at once lead these raw 
levies against the enemy ;— every re- 
source, therefore, which experience 
and ingenuity could suggest, was ex* 
hausted to confer on them that dis- 
cipline in which they were deficient. 
Officers were procured either by drafts 
from Spain, or by selecting the subal- 
terns ot the regiments which had es- 
caped from Russia. A large camp was 
formed upon the Maine, where the pre- 
paration of the young soldiers for the 
field, could be carried on without dan- 
ger of interruption from the approach 
of the enemy. — ^The immense armies 
which Buonaparte was accumulatinflr 
proved the uneckpUed rigour of his 
despotism, and tile great resources of 
his empire. 

Digitized by 




Progress of the War. — Buonaparte takes the Command of the French Armies.-^** 
Batik ofLutzen. — Battle of Bantzen, and Retreat ^thejfUi^*-^The cam* 
iined Armies retire, and Buonaparte enters Dresden. 

As the allied sovereigns were fully 
persuaded that their chance of success, 
m the great enterprize which they had 
undertaken, must depend upon the 
soundness of their pnncjples, no less 
than upon the numbers and valour of 
their armies, they hastened to announce 
the maxims of policy by which they 
Were guided. 

Prince Kutousoff, the commander- 
in-cnief of the Russian and Prussian 
armies, accordingly published an ad* 
dress to Germany m the names of the 
£mperor of Russia and King of Prus- 
W. In this addre8S»4he two monarchs 
fi^ve a solemn ple6f e of their inten- 
tions. They desired to re-establish 
Germany in her rights and indepen- 
dence. They would not tolerate that 
badge of a foreifirn yoke, the confede- 
ration of the Rhine. They declared 
that they had no intention of disturb- 
ing France, nor of forcing with their 
armies her rightful frontiers. They de- 
dred that she might occupy herself in 
her own concerns, and not disturb the 
repose of other nations. They were 
anxious for peace, but for suqh a peace 
as should be founded upon a solid 
basis ; and they concluded with an- 
nouncing their determination not to 

lay down their arms, until the founda* 
tions of the independence of every Eu- 
ropean state should have been esta- 
bkshed and secured. 

The unprosperous state to whiol| 
the affairs of the French were reduced^ 
had, as it was natural to expect, a great 
influence on the policy of their iSlies. 
Even Denmark now expressed a dis- 
position to join the great confederacy 
of Europe f she proposed, however, 
the most extravagant terms. She sent 
an ambassador to London, who ten* 
dered to England the benefit of a Da* 
nish alliance, on the foUowinjg condi- 
tions :— 1st, That all the territories of 
Denmark (Norway of course included) 
should be |ruaranteed to her. 2df 
That all her islands should be restored* 
8d, That her fleet should be givoi up, 
and a large indemnity allowed ror ita 
capture. A considerable sum was also 
demanded, as a compensation for what 
the Danes had suffered during the occu* 

?ition of Zealand by the British. 4thy 
hat the Hanse towns should be at* 
signed to her. 5th, That a subsidy 
should be granted to pay the troops 
necessary to enable her to uke pos- 
session of these towns. And upon 
the accession of the British govera- 

Digitized by 


Chap. IS.] 



nfot to these reasonahU t&noh Den- 
mark would make peacet and join 
the common cause. Such demands^ 
dF course, could not require a mo- 
ment's deliberation, and the Dinish 
minister took his departure.^— £ng« 
land was the last of the allied powers 
tried by Denmark She began at 
Petersburgh under French influence, 
and there she failed ; she continued 
negotiations at Copenha^n under the 
aame influence, and again she failed ; 
the then turned her attention towards 
London, where there could be no such 
influence, and there she failed also. 
But although her attempts at negotia- 
tion bad no success, the momentary 
change which was thus produced upon 
her policy, had considerable influence 
on the affairs of Hamburgh, which 
about this time excited great interest 
in ILngland. 

The grand French army (inclu- 
ding the dindon of General Grenier, 
amounting to 20,000 men, which in 
the beginniag of January had hastened 
fipom Italy to the north; had been re- 
duced by many severe engagements 
with the cossackj to about 18,(X)0 men, 
and had quitted Berlin to lay the basis 
•f future o^rations in a more solid 
msoner behmd the Elbe. General 
lA»rand» in the meantime, who had 
kq>t po s session of Swedish Pomerania 
with about 2500 men, and had been 
iastmcted to maintain himself there at 
sU erenta, put himself m nsarch to fol« 
hm die grand army, whose left wing 
VIS formed by the army of Pomerania 
under his command* baron Tetten- 
bonie» colonel-connnandant of a corps 
of General Wittgenstein's division of 
the aroiT, marct^ at the same time 
kk the direction of Hamburgh f his 
faaguard was at Limburg, when 
Mormd^ on the 15th of March* en- 
tered Mollen. As some parties of 
oossacks had been detached in front, 
and were apptooching MoDeUf the ar- 
?7 of Ponienuiia l^ltedy and after- 


wards mardied to Beigedorf. Gene- 
nd Morand then attempted to march 
from Bergedorf to Hamburgh, but 
was prevented bj the Danish troops* 
3000 of whom, with a numerous ar- 
tillerf, were stationed on the borders 
to maintain their neutrality. 
, Colonel Hamilton, the govemor-of 
Heligoland, was induced by the suc- 
cess of the Russian arms, and the £a* 
vMiurable reports from different parts 
of the Hanoverian coast, to take every 
step which an inconsidmble fcM-ce at 
his disposal wonld admit of, to pro- 
mote the common cause* and to assist 
the opentions of the dBed armies ia 
this direction* Lieutenant Banks ac« 
cmdingly proceeded to Cuxhaven^ 
whence the French had departed with 
great expedition, after destroying all 
^ir ffvn-boats, and dismounting the 
guns from the stronr works construct* 
ed for the defence of the harbour. Oa 
a summons from Lieutenant BankSf 
the castle of Ritzenbuttle, and bat- 
teries of Cuxhaven, were surrendered 
by the burghers, and the British and 
Hamburgh flags were immediately dis* 
played. The peasanU assembled in 
considerable numbers, and took the 
strong battery and wofks at Bremerke. 
A corps of about 1500 French hair 
ving been collected in the vicinity^ 
threatened to retake the battery, ai^l 
application was made to Major Kentz* 
ioser, at Cuxhaven, for assistancei 
This officer having left Cuxhaven with 
a party of the soldiqrs in wagons, was 
met by the peasant^, who informed 
him that the enemy had marched off 
ki great haste, in consequence of the 
kncung of some British troops. 

Tettenbome, after this, entered 
Hamburgh, amid the acdamations of 
the citizens. In consequence of this 
happy event the ancient government 
W9S restore.— -Colonel Tettenbome 
addressed the mhabitanU of the left 
bank of the Lower Elbe, and the ia« 
habttiots of the dtj of Lubec* ex** 

Digitized by 


518 EDINBURGH ANNUAL REGISTER, 1813. [Chap. 15. 

hotting ttiem; to take up arms in this 
sacred wary-«-telling them that they* 
knew the fate of the French grand ar* 
my, which had been entirely destroy- 
ed on the plains of Russia, — and as- 
suring them that jpowerful armies were 
hastening to their support. " May 
disgrace OTertake every one,'* said he, 
^* who in these evsntnil times, when 
the struggle is for the greatest bless- 
ings of the human race, can sit with 
his arms folded." The people were 
invited to raise a volunteer corps in 
Hamburgh, Lubec, and Bremen, to 
bear the name of ^* The Hanseatic 
Lesion/' and form a part of the army 
of the north of Germany. 
« A small decachment of veterans sent 
by Colonel Hamilton to Cuxhaven^ 
marched to Bremerlee to occupy the 
battery at that place, and to afford 
support to the insurgent peasantry. — 
The enemy, however, collected a force 
of five or six thousand men at Bremen^ 
and a detachment of about seven hun- 
dred of them marched rapidly upon 
Bremerlee, dispersed the peasants, and 
forced the bridge, which was bravely 
defended by a party of the 1st veteran 
battalion. The enemy then attacked 
the battery where the remainder of the 
veterans, and a body of peasants^ were 
stationed.— These peome capitulated 
in the hope of saving their lives. The 
French spared six or seven of the Bri- 
tish veterans, but treacherously mas^ 
sacred every one of the peasants i they 
pillaged the town and returned hastily 
to Bremen. 

The King of Prussia, meanwhile, 
was busily employed in extending over 
the continent a spirit of insurrection 
against the French. He perceived the 
advantages which had resulted from 
the animating addresses of the Empe- 
ror Alexander, and he embraced every 
opportunity of profiting by the same 
expedient. On the 6th of April, he 
issued from Breslaw, a proclamation to 
the inhabitants of the German provin- 

ces belonging to Prussia, which were 
ceded by the treaty of Tilsit. « It was 
neither,*' said the king, « by my choice 
nor your fault, that you, my belo- 
ved and faithful subjects, were torn 
firom my paternal heart. The force of 
events brought on the peace of Tilsit» 
by which we were separated. But 
even that convention, like all other* 
since made vnth France, was broken 
by our enemies ; they themselves have, 
by their infidelity, released us from our 
connection with them ; and God, by 
the victories of our powerful allies, haa 
orepared the liberation of Germany. 
Neither are you, from the moment 
when my faithful people fiew to arms 
£or me, for themselves, and for vou, 
any longer bonnd by that commifsive 
oath which connected you witli your 
new ruler. To you, I therefore speak 
in the same language as I did to my 
beloved people, concerning the causes 
and objects of the present war. Yon 
have now again the same claim to my 
affection, and I to your obedience.-— 
Again Joined to my people, you vnll 
share the same danger, but you will 
likewise partake of the sanfe reward* 
and of equal glory. I depend upon 
your attachment ; our native country 
relies on your strength. Join your 
youths to my warriors who have late* 
ly renewed the glory of the Prussian 
arms. Seize your swords, and form 
your insurrectional levy according to 
the example of your noble brethren , 
whom with just pride I call my sub- 
jects. When you shall have tought 
with us for our common country, when 
by your exertions you shall have m« 
sisted in establishing its independence^ 
and proved that you are worthy of 
your ancestors, and of the Prussian 
name^ then will futurity heal the 
wounds inflicted by times past, and we 
shall find the happiness that has been 
lost to us in the conviction of a £uth« 
ful attachment, and in the undisturbed 
enjoyment of liberty and peace.'* 

Digitized by 


Crap. 18.] 



Acccnrding to the difj^tions made 
bf GeiKnl Wittgemtem on the left 
bink of the Elb^, the three flying 
corps vnder the command of Generals 
Dondberg, Tchermcheff, and Tetten- 
borar, were ordered to precede the ar* 
mj9 and to pass the Elbe between 
tiaabui^h and Magdeburgh* While 
pveparattons were making tor the pas- 
sage of the river, the French army con- 
emtirated in the Tidaity of Magde- 
bvgh» and strengthened itself by re- 
kfoi cem ents firom the troops round 
Drctden and Xidpzig. Its left wing 
coBMited of three considerable corps, 
eDcaii^>ed near LuberitK and Stendal ^ 
md the whole army was under the 
eoauMttdof MarriialsDaToast and Vic- 
tor. — Geoen^ Domberg arrived first 
It HoirettxTgy and afterwards crossed 
the Elbe at the village of Ouitjobel, 
oppovte to Werlen. The enemy, four 
or fire tboasand strong, approached 
£rom Amebergy and ofa^ed the Rus- 
mn corpt to quit the to#n of Wer- 
ie% aad m«cross the Elbe. The Rns- 
liaBrlott in this, aftur one officer and 
18 dragoons, who had reaiained too 
kM^ at Werien. 

The corps of General TchernichefiT 
la tbe nseantinie arrived at Havdberg, 
and a cewltil of war was held cohoem- 
aig the totwte operatioM; Geaeral 
Tchcnaiciieffy in consec^tice, first 
ftmtA tKe Elbe with has corps, and 
todspoiaeasioo of Seehanken and Lich- 
lerftndf to aBcnre the passage of the 
corps of Domberg. The necessary dis« 
poattioDSf howaver, were searoelymade^ 
when Major Count Puschkio, who was 

Kd with a regiment of cosncks at 
terfidd, was attacked by three 
batt^iena of French infantry tad 900 
cavalry, with two pieces of artillery. 
This officer succeeded in keeping the 
eaemy etnployedt until a refftment of 
cavalry of the division of the Baron 
Psh&en came to his support. This re- 
gineat attacked the enemy, drove him 
Sack to Werlen, and made two officers 

and sixty men pri8oners.-»GeneraU 
I>omberg and Tehemicheff were in* 
formed that General Morand with a 
corps of upwards of 3000 infantry, 1 1 
cannon, and 300 cavalry, was pressing 
forward by the way of Jotuudt to 
Luneberg, to punish the mhabitantt 
of that town for having dared to take 
up arms. The Generals resolved to 
hasten to Luneberg to protect the 
brave inhabitants from the fate which 
threatened them. As the troops bad 
lately made a forced march of ten Ger- 
man (forty English) nales hi M hours, 
they could not be brought up until the 
8d of April, in the morning, 12 hours 
after the entry of the Ftcnch into 
Luneberg. The Russians were inform- 
ed that on this very forenoon several 
executions were to take p4ace in the 
city, and that a number of victims were 
again to attest the cruelty of the ene- 
mies of Germany. They therefore de- 
termined insuntiy to atuck the town. 
Scarcely had two of the coq>s ap. 
moached it on the right bank of the 
Elmenau, within the distance of tvro 
cannon shot, and drawn themselves up 
in order of battle, under cover of the 
bushesand hedges, when Baron Pahlen, 
with great skill, commenced the attack 
on the other side, and met with com-* 
plete success. The enemy advanced 
against him with two battalions of iii- 
£sntry and three pieces of artillery, and 
attempted to cut him off from the road 
to Bienenbuttel. The parties encoun- 
tered at this place, and charged each 
other briskly. The enemy, who was 
ignorant of the strength of the Russian 
and Prussian corps, and imagined that 
he had only to act against a few cos- 
sacks, was surorised.— -At the same 
time General Domberg, at the head 
of a Prussian battalion of infantry, 
rushed on the enemy's battalion, and 
drove it along the bridge close under 
the town, on the rig^t bank of the El- 
menau* The assailants found the gates, 
the wallsy and even the houses in the 

Digitized by 



town defended by the enemy's iaf«tt« 
try ; the situation of the pkce wm fa- 
vourable for making a yigoroos reuat* 
aoce, and here an obstinate and bloody 
cngagcmentenstted. RussiansandPrus- 
aiaas vyed with each «ther in noble 
«Buhition; and the artillery, which 
was not more than one hundred paces 
distant from the enemy» made great 
kaTOC among the French in the streets 
of the town. At length the Pnts* 
aians sscceeded, after the battle had 
■aged with the greatest obstimicy at 
the cntranoe of the town for more 
than two hours, in possessing them- 
aehres of one of the gates. This suc- 
cess forced the enemy to quit the 
town, which he did in such haste, that 
#ae of his battalions was separated.— 
A brisk fire of infantry vras maintain* 
ed ; the battalion which had beoi cut 
cSf when discovered by the Russtair 
yagers, made a charge with the^bayo* 
net ; but this was the last effort of 
the enemy. A heary fire of grap^ 
diot counaoed them th^t there was nm 
possibility of escape, and they laid 
#own their arms.— 'The trophies of this 
day were nine pieces of artillery, 100 
o&ers, and 2200 privates, prisoners. 
The zeal, assiduity, and judgment, 
CTiaced by the generals in this trial 
of th^ combined Russian and Pnis- 
aian troops on the left bank of the 
Elbe, reflected the greatest honour on 
ahem. This was the first aff^r of any 
importance which the allies had with 
tile enemy upon German ground. 

The Kjog of Saxony, after quitting 
hia capital^ followed the retreating 
French army, and repaired to a place 
of security in Franconia : his troops^ 
lM>weTer, did not imitate the example. 
They separated from the French, and 
shut themselves up in Torgan, where 
they eonduded a treaty of neutrality, 
whichbntfor inauspicious events nuffht 
aoon have been converted into an bo- 
sourable league. The allied forces 
jprocecded almost without pppositioQ 

through Saxony, and although trestad 
by the sovereign as hostile, l^ the peo« 
pie they were every where hailea an 
deliverers. The entrance of the Rua- 
siaas into Leipzig revived the droop* 
ingspiriu of the people. The allien im* 
mediately advanced, crossed the Saale 
at different points, occupied Gotha 
and Weimar, and bqgan to penetnte 
through the forest ofThwingia. 

Buonaparte in his former campai^pis 
had generally succeeded in obtaiamg' 
the most accurate information of the 
designs of the enemy opposed to hinu 
The French were, however, at this pe» 
nod, kept in the utmost ignomce of 
the OMvements of their adversaries 
while the allies contrived t«> obtain m 
correct knowledgeof their plans. Thus 
it happened to tM enemy in an attempt 
whicn he made to fecover Berlin.-— 
While Beauhamois, ignorant that Witw 
genstiinjvas near him, flattered him- 
self that he shouli piarch on unimpe- 
ded to the Prussian capitd, the ktter 
took the most skilful aMMures to s«r* 
round and attack Jnm with his whde 
force. For din purpose he colfetsted 
the corps of D' York and Berg at Zen* 
list and Lcitzkan, on the great south- 
ern road from Magdebwgh to Dessau* 
while hC'Stationed those of Borstel and 
Bulow at Ncdlitz and Yiesar, to the 
northward of Magdebvrgh. Itwasaru. 
ranged that the whole arany^ should 
inove forward simuhaneMMly from the 
opfomu points and join in the attack | 
this phm succeeded. The French, who 
had the advantage of the ground, ve* 
sisted vrith bravery ; but they were 
successively driven, by the separate de- 
tachments of the allies, from die posi- 
tions which diey endeavoured to main- 
tain at three different vflbges, and af- 
ter havifig two regiments of cavalry 
cut to pieces, they owed the preserva* 
tion of their remaining force only to 
the darkness of the ni^ht. Thus fo- 
voured, they retired at ul pomts ; they 
did notcreo attempt to mamtain thed^ 

Digitized by 


Chap. 13.] 



fleSf bot retreated to Mafddmnrb^ 
which wat afterwards ckitefy blocka- 
ded. Thus had the French aheady 
been twice defieatrd by the united Rua- 
itaa aond FrnMian forces | their first at- 
tentpts oo each side of the Elbe were 
frustrated. The victories of Luneberf 
and Mockern were hailed as omens of 
the success of the campaign* 

The Russian force was about tliis 
time divided into three armies— one un- 
der WittgensteiBt a second under Tchi- 
diagoffy and a third under Winsengo- 
rode ;-*-Prioce Kutosoff comrnancM 
the whole. Wittgenstein's main force 
had crossed the Elbe in order to drive 
the French back upon the Maine— - 
One oi the corps of this army under 
General Berkcndoff had entered L»u- 
becy and other corps were on the Elbe, 
near Boiteenborg, Fart of Tchicha- 
goCPs army was in the vicinity of 
Thorn, wmle another division was em- 
ployed under Platoff in the siege of 
jSantzic* Winzengerode's army was 
divided at Custrin, Lansbergy and 
Dresden ; while another corps had 
passed the Elbe at Schandauy to turn 
Davoust. Rusnan reinforcements were 
on the Vistula. — ^The Prussian force 
was thus distributed : Genera) Blucher 
had removed from Silesia into Saxonvy 
and General D'York was at Berlin 
with the main army. Detachments had 
been sent to Hamburgh end Rostock, 
which were now occupied by Prussian 
corps ; and another Prussian detach- 
ntnt had invested Stettin.— A Swe- 
dish force was at Stralsund ; and it 
was expected that by the commence* 
meot of the campaign, the Crown 
Prince of Sweden would have the 
iof50,00amen. The whole 

Russian force, with which it was ex- 
pected the caaspaign would open, was 
roosterroneonslyestimatedat 220,000 
the Prussian at 70^000, and the Sw» 
dish and Pomeranian at 50,000; a- 
mounting in whole to d44>,000 men« 
To these were added the force whtoh 

HaBover,Hes8e, Bmoswick, theHanse 
Towns, and Saxony, were expected to 

These OMgnificent expectatioas,how^ 
ever, were not realized. The Rosqaa 
army which crossed the Vistula never 
amounted to 220^000 ; while the force 
brought to the Elbe by this power 
did not exceed 100,000 effective men. 
An unfortunate relaxatioa in the ef- 
forts of Russia had become mani> 
fest between the months of January 
and Maj; and the expectations so 
eagerly rodulged, that the aUies would 
have appeared on the Elbe with a 
force so preponderating, as to defeat 
any attempt of Buonaparte to main- 
tain himself between that river and 
the Rhine, vrere wholly disappoint- 

Buonaparte thus had ktaure to as- 
semble and organize a force which en- 
abled him to resume the offensive, and 
to recover the support of the snaH 
anx^iary states. The Russians, it 
wookl seem, had determined in Janu- 
ary, that the Vistuk should bound the 
advance of their main force ; and when 
circumstances produced achange in this 
determination, the arran^rements for 
bringing forward the remforceoaeats 
and reserves were not in sufficient pro- 
gress.— The allies were now aware that 
the French were debouching from the 
Thuringian mountains, with a view to 
join Beauhamois, who, to fivour this 
movement, proceeded firoB Magde*^ 
bureh towards the upper part of the 
Saate. The pknoftheallies was form- 
ed en such knowledge,— for the expe* 
fience gained at Jena was not thrown 
away upon them. They used every ef- 
fort to prevent the junction of so vast 
a body of French fbroes. in conse* 
quence of Beauhamois* retreat from 
: Magdcburgh it becanoe less practicable 
and less important to maiotain his com- 
stmrications with Davoust ; the tatter, 
therefore, uniting-with Sebastiani and 
Vaodammei was at liberty to attempt 

Digitized by 



the great obi 
-—to cut off the troops sent to orga- 
nize insurrection in the aeighbourhood 
<f[ the Weser. In this, however, Da- 
¥0ust was in a great measure disap- 
pointed. GeneralDomberg, with that 
skill and acthrity which always maii^- 
ed his conduct, removed his troops to 
the right bank of the Elbe. Here they 
covered Hamburgh, against which Da- 
voust continued to make a demonstra- 
tion, though with very little effect, 
from the opposite bank of the river« 

On the 16th of April, the garrison 
of Thorn, consisting of 400 Poles, 
^500 Bavarians, and 90 Frenchmen, 
surrendered to the Russians under Ge- 
neral Count Langeron« The trophies 
of this success were iBOO pieces of can- 
non ; — nearly the whole of the Bava- 
rians and Poles afterwardsenltsted under 
the patriotic standard. General Lange- 
ron's corps, amounting to 15,000 men, 
WBB now exMibled to co-operate with 
the force employed before JDantzic— 
Spandau, situated on the river Spree, 
and not far distant from Beriin, capi- 
tukted to the Russians oa the 18th of 
April ; the garrison engaging not to 
serve i^nst the allies during one year. 
—The fortress of Czentokaw surren- 
dered on the 4th of May to a Russian 
force» commanded by Lieutenant-Ge- 
neral Von Sacken, after the batteries 
had been opened two days. 

The French armies were now placed 
in a critical situation. The main body 
of the active military force extended 
from Maedeburgh to the Saak, while 
the new levies, raised by the late con- 
scription, were forming on the Maine. 
The advance of the allies tended to 
interrupt the communication between 
these two armies, and to compel the 
one, either to eneaire sinffhr, or wholly 
to withdraw itself from Magdeburg^. 
The time was therefore come for the 
French corps, if possible, to unite and 
to act ; and Buonaparte conceived 
them to be already in such a condition 

as that, without risk, they might be 
brought into the field. Tne army on 
^the Maine was therefore directed to 
move forward ; and their leader left 
Paris, to place himself at the head of 
the united forces. His presence, it 
might seem, must have been taorc 
wanted, amid the difficulties under 
which the French army had kboured ; 
but it suited that policy which he has 
always fi^lowed, to stand aloof till the 
completion of his preparations afford* 
ed a fair promise, that victory would 
soon follow hia arrival. 

The forces which Buonaparte had 
now assembled were very mat, aod 
considerably out-numbered those which 
hisopponeots had collected on thesceoe 
of action. — ^With regard to the general 
conduct of the allies, although it be 
impossible to withhold a tribute of 
applause from it, there yet appear some 
points in the arranjrements of the pre- 
sent campaign, which may aSbrd room 
forcritiasm. The Russians, as already- 
remarked, had set out upo» the prin- 
ciple of tk)t suffering their advance to 
be retarded by the fortresses which 
they might find in their route, but* 
leaving each of them watched by 
a detachment of troops, of proceedioo^ 
with their main body to the £lbe aod 
the Rhine. This measure, circum- 
stanced as they veere, seeaiia to merit 
the highest approbation. They had 
thus, without sustaining any inoonve* 
nience, left behind them three succes- 
sive chains, including some of ,the 
strongest fortressess m Europe. It 
seems evident, that the success of their 
plan depended upon the amount of the 
force which they miffht bring to th^ 
front of their line, if they maintain- 
ed their ground there, the fortresses* 
deprived of succour, must sooner or 
later be compelled to submit i if, on 
the contrary, they were unable to hcrfd 
their advanced position, the fortressea 
would soon be relieyed, and the alliea 
would lose the ground which they had 

Digitized by 


Chap. 18.] 


gmedm Since they Had adopted the 
t^stem of leaving the strong places be* 
hmdy they ought not at the same time 
to have attempted to besiege them. 
Yet at this time Thorn and Spandao 
were taken bj reenlar siege, and the 
operations before I>antzic were press, 
ed with considenible vigour. Had 
aU the troops employed in such sieges^ 
beyond the numbers required for mere 
obsenratiouy been brought forward in* 
to Saxonyt the inequality of the com- 
batants would either not have existedt 
or must have been less decided } and it 
mi^t not have been necessary for the 
allied armies to retrace their steps. 

The next observation is» that the 
slBes being from the above* or other 
caosesy decidedly inferior in number, 
the policy seems doubtful by which 
they were induced to advance beyond 
the Elbe. If their information was 
correct, rdative to the numbers of the 
French army» they must have known 
the impossibility of makinghead against 
it in the open plain. The most pru* 
dent plan woiddhave been, to strength- 
en as much as possible the line of de- 
fence formed by the Elbe, to obtain 
possession of the bridges, or to throw 
up entrenchments before those com- 
munded by the enemy. The combined 
armies might thus have maintained 
tfaem«elves till their levies were com- 
pleted, or reinforcements arrived.— 
A different course, however, was pur- 
sued ; and to this circumstaace must 
be ascribed the advantages which the 
enemy seemed to gain at the opening 
of the campaign. 

As the armr on the Maine moved 
imo Saxonr, that near Magdebureh, 
commanded by Beauhamois, marched 
it, and the junction took place 


on the left bank d£ the Saak. The 
whole of these united forces might 
be estimated at from 150 to 200,000 
men*— On tlw 25th of April, Buona* 
parte arrived at Erfurth, and immedi* 
ately ordered all the divisions t« move 

forward in the directioo of Leipzig.^ 
The det ac hment of the aUied troops 
which had advanced beyond the Saale, 
hH back upon the approach of the 
French army, and the main body es- 
tablished itself behind the Elster. 

On the mommg of the 2d of May, 
Buoiiaparte advanced into the plain of 
Lutzen, with the view of reaching 
Leipziey and throwing hiiMelf thence 
upon die rear of the allied armies. 
Suddenly, however, the whole of their 
forces crossed the Elster at Fegaw, 
and commenced a grand attack opoa 
the French army. The contest which 
ensued was one of the most sangui* 
nary description. The Rusnans and 
Prussiaus were under the chief com- 
mand of General Wittgenstein, and the 
French under Buonaparte. The bat* 
tie commenced by the attack of the 
village of Gross-Uorschen. The ene* 
my was sensible of the importance 
of this point, and wished to msintaia 
himself in it* It was carried by the 
right wing of the corps under General 
Blucher's order; at the same timCf 
his left ymz pubhed forward in frontt 
and soon charged the French at \hi 
village of Kelm*Gorschen. From this 
time all the corps came successive- 
ly into action, and the battle became 
general. The viUage of Gross-Gor^ 
schen was disputed with unexampled 
obstinacy. Six times vras it taken and 
reuken by the bayonet ; buttheRus* 
sians and Prussians at last obtained the 
superiority, and this village, as well as 
those of jtelm Gorschen and Rham, 
remained in the power of the combined 
armies. The enemy's centre was bro- 
ken, and he was driven off the field of 
battle. He, nevertheless, brought for. 
ward fresh columns. Some corps drawa 
from the reserve of the combioed ar-* 
mies, and j^aoed under the orders of 
Lieutenant-General Kavnovtzin, were 
opposed to them. Here towards even- 
ing a combat ensued, which was like« 
wise e^^ceedingly obstinate i but tlu 

Digitized by 




enemy wu at last repulsed.— This bat* 
tk waa distinguished by one of the 
moft dreadful cannonades known in 
the annab of warlike operations, which 
continued till eleven o'clock in the 
evening, when night alone put an end 
to it. During the cannonade, the fire 
of musketry was uninterruptedly kept 
up, and frequently the valour of the 
aUkd troops proved itself in attacks 
with the bayonet. Seldom or never 
was a battle fought with such ani« 
modty. The French derived great 
advantage from their positions on the 
heights near Lutzen, where they had 
thrown upstrongentrenchments, which 
they defended with a heavy fire of ar« 
tillery. But the alHed troops drove 
them from one position to another; 
nor were they to be deterred even when 
the superior defence of the enemy in 
his last positions rendered frequent at- 
tacks necessary. — ^The result was, that 
the Russian and Prussian troops kept 
possession of the field of battle during 
the whole night. Their loss was in« 
deed very great | it may be fairly 
estimated at from 8 'to 10,000 men 
killed and wounded. Major the Prince 
of Hesse Hamburgh was killed, and 
General Blucherwas wounded. An 
unusually larse proportion of officers 
were among Uie number of the slain. 

Buonaparte afiiected g^at elation for 
thisbattle. The French chief of the stafiF 
in his report mentions, ^ the fine ac« 
tions which have shed a lustre on this 
brilliant day, and which, like a clap of 
thundery have pulverized the chimerical 
hopes and all the calculations for the 
destruction and dismemberment of the 
empire.*' Reverting as usual to Eng- 
land, he remarked, that ** the cloudy 
train collected by the cabinet of St 
James's during a whole winter is in 
an instant destroyed, like the Gordiap 
knot by the sword of Alexander. 
Europe would at length be at peace, 
if the sovereigns and the ministers who 
direct their cabinets could have bee« 

present on the field of battle. They 
would nve up all hopes of causing the 
star of France to set, and perceive that 
those counseUors who wish to dismem* 
ber the French empire, and humble the 
emperor, are preparing the ruin of 
their sovereign." 

But nothinflr can be more entertain* 
ing on this subject than theeloquence of 
Cardinal Maury, who, in obedience to 
the order of his government, exhorted 
the people of France to join in the so- 
lenm ceremonies of religion on the oc- 
casion of this victory. ** Our enemies^" 
said this holy personaee, ** emboldened 
by the defection of the most versatile 
of our allies, who already expiates the 
blindness of his folly, entertained no 
doubt of the full success of their new 
coahtion against France. Thus, while 
their frozen climate suspended the 
course of our victories, ihe Russians 
considered the fugitive protection of 
the elements as a lasting triumph* 
They believed, when they put them* 
selves into the pay of England, that 
the emperor would never return tare« 
organize his army. They flattered 
themselves that they would drive us out 
of Germany, and even carry the seat of 
war into our ancient territories, should 
we refuse to submit to such laws at 
their arrogance should please to dic- 
tate to us Srom thebanks of the Rhine | 
nor did they awaken from this dream 
of glory until the moment of their dis- 
enchantment on the plains of Lutzen. 
—Four months of prodigies on the one 
side, and of illusions on the othert 
have sufficed to enable France to 
meet them, by shewing herself to as- 
tonished Germany more powerful than 
ever. The winter's rest has repair- 
ed every thing. A noble emulation 
and voluntary sacrifices have relie- 
ved the finances, without reducing 
us to any ruinous expedient. Ood, 
who enjoys the presumption and te- 
merity ot moruls ; God, according 
to the expresuon of the propket^ 

Digitized by 


Chap. IS.] 



Uew on the ambitious chimeras of. 
oar enemies, and they immediately^ 
vanished. See then now, humilitated 
and sdready Tanquished, these ima- 
ginary conquerors, who so lightly 
reckoned on our dishonour !-— The 
gbrious victory for which we are this 
day going to render to the All- power- 
ful the most solemn acts of thanks- 
finog, announces triumphs still more 
decisive in our favour, tl^e shall drive 
these Tartars back to their frightful 
climate, which can no longer save them. 
Powers who are enemies to France! 
ye had numbered our legions, ye had 
calculated of how many arms they 
vere composed, but ye had forgotten 
at the same time to appreciate the ex- 
tnordinary genius of their chief, whose 
sablime combinations know how to 
balance their actions, to concert the 
whole, to supply their means, and 
doable their force. You still believe 
this great man to be far from his ar- 
my ; while his history as well as your 
dxesuna should have taught you, that 
m his marches, his post is always at 
the heaid of his victorious phalanxes: 
Yon hastened by three days the move- 
ment of a triumph which he had se- 
cretly prepared m his mind ; but by 
eluding his combinations, you made 
DO alteration in h'S dispositions, ex- 
cepting solely in the manner to con- 
quer you. The inferiority of our ca- 
valry, which the emperor wished to 
nare, and for which he gave as a sup- 
cement his thundering artillery, show- 
ed at once his intentions by one of 
those suddpi iUuminations of , which 
Bossuet speaks : ** It is an Egyptian 
battle," said he to his troops, " a 
good infantry supported by artillery 
ouj;fat to be sufficient of itself. ''—Then, 
rismg into a sort of frenzy, this holy 
personage adds, << One stands trans* 
ported with adxniration before the ex- 
traordinary man who has raised our 
empire to such a prodi^ous decrree of 
power and glory. He is the sovu of his 


government as well as of his antty. One 
cannot conceive how a mortal could 
possibly surmount so many difficulties^ 
be sufficient for the performance of so 
many duties, unite so much activity to 
so much foresight, such vast extent of 
conception to so much vigilance in the 
details.'* — But we must return fron 
the rhapsodies of Cardinal Maury to 
the affairs of the campaign. 

The conception of this battk, on 
the part of the allies, was bold and ju- 
dicious, and the issue pot unfavourable.. 
But with their inferiority of numbers, 
nothing less than a decisive victory 
could have enabled them to maintain' 
their present position. Buonaparte, 
still followed out his original plan of 
pushing on to Leipzic, to throw him* 
self on their rear. To guard against 
this movement, it became necessary to 
fall back to the Mulda ; and as no 
advantageous position presented itself, 
which could compensate the numerical 
deficiency, the combined armies had no 
alternative, but to retire behind the 
Elbe. Their retreat was effected slow- 
ly, in perfect order, and without loss.— - 
Buonaparte advanced, and on the 8th 
May, made his entry into Dresden. 
The French were once more admitted 
into Torgau, and the St^zon troops 
returned to submission. General Thiel* 
man,indeed, refused in the first instance 
to admit the French into Torgau with- 
out an order from his sovereign ; but 
that. order was given, and Lauriston 
entered op the evening of the 9th. 
Three days afterwards, the King of 
Saxony proceeded to Dresden in cus* 
tody of the French guard, which was 
sent to receive him some miles from 
the city* The spectacle, according to 
Buonaparte, was " a very fine one." 
The two sovereigns dismounted from 
their horses so soon as they saw each 
other, embraced, and then entered 
Dresden at the head of the guard, 
<( amid the acclamations of an immense 
population/'— >Tae people of Dresdt n, 

Digitized by 



wIm had entreated their kmg is the 
noct p r t MJ ng maimer to throw off the 
voke of BHOBaptrte, mutt have been 
nighly- pleated to tee thit Buonaparte 
in po neati on of their capital, and their 
sovereign exhibited to them as a cap* 
tire. The king» however, thus re- 
toraed to his vassalage, and Saxony 
was again a French province. 

The allies, finding it vain to attempt 
defending the passa^ of the Elbe, de- 
termined upon faUing back to some 
stronger position. 1 hey had now to 
choose their Kne of retreat. They 
determined not to retire upon Berlin, 
or to attempt to cover that capital, 
but to retreat in an opposite direc- 
tion, throt^rh Lusatia, and near the 
Bohemian frontier. A course similar 
to this had been pursued during the 
last Russian campaign $ and it seems 
to have been dictated by the ablest 
policy. Had the armies retreated up- 
on Berlin, and the central provinces 
of the Prussian monarchy, these im- 
portant objects could have been preser- 
ved only by fighting at disadvantage, 
and on the loss of a battk, the capital 
must have been abandoned. But by 
fidling back in a different direction, 
the enemy, who could not leave a great 
army benind, was necessarily drawn 
into remoter and less important pro- 
vinces. Agreeably to tnis plan, an 
advantageous position was chosen near 
Bautzen ; witn the intention, should 
that be forced, of falling back upon 
Silesia. To prevent the flying corps 
of the enemy from penetrating to Ber- 
lin, that capital was covered by Gene* 
ral Bulow, with a corps partly com- 
posed of regulars, and partly of the 
newly-raised hmdwehr and muitia. 

The advance of the different corps 
of the French army to t<ie Elbe had 
rendered it necessary for the divisions 
of Generals Tettenbome, Domberg, 
mndTchemicheff, to recross that river ; 
they were accordingly concentrated at 
Hamburgh. On the 8th May, Da< 

vottst collected from 5 to 6000 men 
in the victnity of Harburgh ; and this 
force, with the exception of about 
1,500 men left in Harburgh, was em« 
barked at one o'clock in the morning 
of the 9th. Favoured by the ebb tide, 
and under cover of numerous batteries 
on the opposite shore, a landing was 
effected at WiBielmsburgh, which was 
occupied by Hamburgh volunteers and 
a few Mecklenburghers. The num- 
ber of troops stationed in the island 
did not exceed 1100 men ; the enemy 
gained ground, therefore, in the first 
mstance ; but on the arnval of a Meek- 
lenburff battalion, which was ordered 
immediately to the support of the vo- 
lunteers, the French virere repulsed. A 
battalion of Hanoverians and a Lubec 
battalion attacked the enemy with im- 
petuosity on his right flank ; he was 
compelled to retreat, and in faUing 
back, he set fire to all the houses and 
mills in the line of his march— The 
French, however, renewed their at- 
tempt, and succeeded by stratagem. 
The inhabitants of Hamburgh and its 
vicmity, when they heard of this second 
attack, were in the greatest confusion 
and distress. Numbers of them vrere 
seen on the roofs of the houses, watch- 
ing the progress of the operations, 
which, at intervals, lifted the whole 
horizon. A partnd nre of musketry 
was heard amid the cannonade ; and 
as the day broke, and the fire approach* 
ed nearer the city, it became evident 
that the enemy nad made good hii 
landing, seized the batteries, and dri- 
ven in the Hamburgh volunteers. The 
apprehensions of the Hamburriieri 
were soon confirmed by the videttea 
who galloped through the streets. It 
was understood in Uie city, that Da- 
voust, who had expressed himsdf in 
the most violent language against Ham« 
burgh, had promised his soldiers five 
hours plunder. The streets were im- 
mediately filled with frightened peo- 
pk| runaing from their houses, heap- 

Digitized by 


Chav. 15.] 



mg waggons with theur funoture and 
nSuables, and endeaTOuring. to escape 
ioto the coontry. The cjy everjr where 
waa» ** The French are come ;" and 
even this cry, proceeding, as it dtd» 
froos a terrified p(^>ulace9 just roused 
fro0a their sleep, was scarcely to be 
diattngmshed amid the trampling of 
cafalry. Aboat half-past six in the 
Bomiagf the drums of the burger* 
^oafd beat to arms ; every thing was 
u fir^htful confusion } men luistily 
c<^ppM^ themsdves with whatever 
anna they could find, and running to 
the alarm-posts ; women and chikhen 
of the first funilies, half dressed, heap- 
ed on waggons, in the midst of beds 
and packagea» and flying in silence 
and tears.; expresses hurrying along 
every moment, and carts passing with 
the wounded just brought in from the 

In the course of the morning, when 
it became evident that the enemy were 
determiaed on veaching Hamburgh, 
the I>anish sub-governor of Altona, 
Blucher, a relative of the Prussian ge*- 
neral, proceeded to Vandanune's head- 
quarters, to remonstrate with him 
against the attack^ and to declare that 
the Danes would assist in repelling it. 
The I>aoe returned, and immediately 
aftenfp«rd three lianish gun-boats, 
fiUed with men, approached from Al« 
taoa» Mid anchored to defend the pas- 
sage opposite to Hamburgh* In the 
evening, as the intentions of the French 
cauld not be ascertained, dl the troops 
were ordered ottU The coaeacks, some 
Danish corps, and lOpieces of Danish 
artiUery« were drawn up alon^ the 
sands.-^&ttssian guns were,'postedclose 
to Altona. These demonstrations had 
the cSect of intimidating the enemy* 

In consequence of the approach of 
a body of Swedes, the Danes evalua- 
ted Hamburgh on the evening of the 
12th« and retured tolheirown territory, 
leaving behind them their artillery for 
the protection <^ the town* The 

Swedes, amoui^g to IdOO men, en* 
tered Hamburgh on the 21 St* General 
Tettenbome, with the Hansiatic le- 
gion, went out to meet them, and they 
were received at the ^te by the burgee 
l^iards. They had been sent forward 
m waggons, and were not at all fa^ 
tigued by travelling i but immediately 
on their arrival mounted guard. Theit 
appearance was martial-*their equip* 
ments in high order^— and they were 
received by idl ranks with joy. The^ 
were afterwards stationed m the tici«> 
nity of the dty, where they remrafd 
tffl the 31st, when they were recalled 
by an order from their government. 

The failure of the negociktions be* 
twixt Denmark and Great Briti^ 
and the pretensions brought forward 
by the Crown Prince of Sweden to 
Norway^, induced the Danes to resume 
hostilities, and occasioned the immedi* 
ate occupation of Hamburgh by the 
French. On the morning of the 30th of 
May, at eight o'clock. Major- General 
Tettenbome, with all the military, 

r'ted Hamburgh ; and at nine o^<r 
k, 5000 Danes, cavalry and infant- 
try, foUowed by 1600 French, entered 
the city under the command of Gene^ 
ral Bruyere, who took possession of 
Hamburgh in the name of Buonaparte. 
A proclamation was issued by the ene* 
my, stating that the persons and pro* 
perty of all those who submitted to the 
French government diould be protects 
ed. — Such was the fate for a time of 
this unfortunate city* 

General Tchemicheff, who acted in 
co-operation with Count Woronzoff 
on the banks of the Elbe, passed that 
river on the ni^ht of the 16th of May, 
and proceeded m the direction of Burg- 
stall, where he teamed from various 
letters which had been intercepted by 
his parties, that a large convoy of nr- 
tiUery, escorted by about SOOO men, 
was to pass on the nioht of the 17th^ 
at Halherstadt. The Russian chief re^ 
solvcdi if posoble, to ictx^lhis ccmvoy* 

Digitized by 



When he had nearly reached the 
point of attack, he found that it de- 
pended on the energy of the moment 
whether he should succeed, or be him- 
self overpowered by a superior force of 
the enemy, which was within a few 
hours march of him. At Haldenslehen 
he learned that a second convoy was 
at Hassen, on the Brunswick road, 
three miles aitd a half from Halber- 
ttadt, which place it had been ordered 
to reach in the rooming to join the first, 
with the view of proceeding with the 
greater safety on its march to the g^rand 
army. This last convoy was escorted 
by 4000 infantry, 500 cavalry, and 
many pieces of artillery. Notwith- 
standing the fatigue which his troops 
bad undergone, he resolved to continue 
his route, — to make an immediate at- 
tack upon the enemy at Halberstadt 
before the arrival of the reinforcement 
<— and to take advantage of the fault 
which the French had committed in 
placing their guns and convoy without 
the town. Upon reconnoitering the 
enemy, he ascertained that the guns 
were placed in a square, the interior of 
which was filled with ammunition^ wag- 
gons and other carriages, and lined 
with infantry, the flanks being cover- 
ed by 250 horse. The whole form- 
ed a sort of fortress almost impenetrable 
to the cavalry. His first care was to 
cut e£P the enemy from the town ; and 
a single gate which the French had ne- 
glected to close afforded him the ^neans 
of attaining his object.— The rear of 
the French troops, while marching out 
to join the square, was charged and 
pursued to the guns. Another party 
of Russians, who had been sent forward 
in hopes of surprising the enemy, made 
two very fine charges against the 
aquare ; but the French having infor- 
mation of this movement, and being 
upon their guard, the Russians could 
sot make any impression. The enemy 
DOW opened a heavy cannonade from 14« 
gunt) to which General Tchemicheff 

could only oppose two ; by the fire of 
which, however, five of the enemy's am- 
munition -waggons were blown up. At 
this moment a regiment of cossacksp 
detached upon the road by which the 
enemy's reinforcements were advan- 
cing, brought intelligence that they 
were within two miles ; this determi- 
ned the ^neral to make a decisive ef- 
fort agamst the square with aU the 
troops. The scattered cosSacks were 
ordered to seize the same moment at 
which the attack should be made by 
the regular cavalry. The success of thia 
brilliant attack against a formidable 
square, defended by 14 pieces of cao- 
non, surpassed expectation In an in- 
stant the batteries were carried, and the 
allies penetrated the square : here the 
carnage was great, as the enemy defend- 
ed himself with valour More than 700 
of the French were killed, and the rest 
taken — not an individual escaped out 
of all this corps. Scarcely was this af- 
fair terminated, when the enemy's se- 
cond columns began to appear, and 
to press upon the cossacks General 
Tchemicheff was compelled to sup- 
port them, that he might gain time to 
send off the captured guns and prison- 
ers. He succeeded in carrying off 14 
guns and 12 ammunition-waggons ; he 
blew up the rest even ra the presence of 
the enemy. — Eight thousand draught 
horses, above IC^ prisoners, with ae* 
vend officers, fell into the hands of the 
conquerors. Such affairs as these may 
seem trifling when compared with the 
magnitude of the operattoos which pre- 
ceded and follovi^, but they have no 
inconsiderable influence on the fate of 
armies and the result of campaigna ; 
and while they do honour to the akill 
and valour by which they are accom- 
plished, they waste the resources of an 
enemy, and ultimately reduce him to 
the most seriousembairassmenta.— But 
events of higher importance will now 
demand attention. 

By the 19th of May, the Pruaaian 

Digitized by 


Cbap. l$J]' 


and Russian reinforcemenU Diider Bir- 
cbj de Tolly, Langeron, Sass, and 
Kleiit, had arrivedt and the total vast 
of the combined forces amouated; to 
150 or 180,000 men. The allies had 
taken up a position with the Spree in 
their front ; their right extended to 
fbrtifitfd eminences, which defended the 
debouches from that river ;^-Bautzett 
formed their centre | and their left was 
supported by woody mountains Where 
the ground was open, particularly in 
the centre, strong works had been 
thrown up ; behind the first position 
other works of equal strength had been 

After reconnoitering the position of 
the allies, Buonaparte said, ** it was 
easy to conceive how, notwithstanding 
a lost battle, hke that of Lutzen, ana 
eight days retreating, the enemy might 
stUl iia^ hopes in the chances of for- 
tune.**— Of the French divisions op- 
posed to the allies, Oudinot's formed 
the right, Macdonald's and Marmont*s 
the centre, and Bertrand's the left.— 
Ney, Lauriston, and Regnier, were at 
Hoverswerda, to the left of the ene- 
my's left win^, and in a position to act 
as occasion ought require, on the right 
of the allies. The latter began to act 
on the offensive by a very bold, bril- 
haat, and, as it should seem, on^jthe p^urt 
of the enemy, a very unexpected ope- 
ration. They supposed that the three 
divisions had been posted at Hovers- 
werda to turn the right of their posi- 
tion, while the remainder of the FreM^h 
army should engage their whole line 
to the right and left of Bautzen. They 
accordingly determined to disengage 
themselves from this mass ; and on the 
19th, early in the morning, they sent 
General D'York with 12,000 Prus- 
sians, and Barclay de Tolly with 18,000 
Russians, to attack the enemy's de- 
tached corps. The Russians took post 
at Kleix, the Prussians at Weissig.— 
Mettiwbile, Bertrand had sent a divi* 
HOD U> Kosigswarder^ to keep up 

communicatibn with Ney and Lauris- 
tob ; but the general who commanded 
this division was suddenly assailed by 
the allies, and driven from Konigswer- 
der —Lauriston arrived at the same 
time before Weissig — the battle com« 
menced, and the enemy was entirely 
worsted on the 19th. 

The battle of Weissig was succeed- 
ed by the general battle of Bautzen. 
The whole French army was engaged $ 
Oudinot, Mortier, Macdonald, Mar- 
mont, Ney, Lauriston, Regnier, and 
Bertnmd. The two detached corps 
were scarcely returned on the 20th to 
their positions near Gattamelda, when 
about noon, the enemy advanced in co- 
lumns on Bautzen, and attacked, under 
protection of a brisk cannonade, the 
advanced-guard commanded by Gene- 
rals Milontdovitch and Kleist. The 
determination of the latter obstinately 
to defend the heights situated on the 
side of Bautzen, occasioned a seriout 
engagement. — He had to fight an ar- 
my, according to the Russian account^ 
four times as numerous as his own, yet 
be did not fall back to his position un- 
til four o^dock in the afternoon, after 
the enemy had entirely turned his lefty 
and after having resisted the most vi- 
.gorous attacks on his right flank and 
iront. The obstinacy with which the 
Prussian General Kleist, and the Rus- 
sian Generals Rudiga, Roth, and 
Marcoff, defended those heights, and 
the conduct of the troops on the oc- 
casion, excited the admiration of the 
whole army. 

While the attack was made on this 
pointy the enemy was preparing ano- 
ther on the centre and left ; but there 
also he was vigorously received by 
Count Miloradovatch and Prince £u- 

fene of Wirtemberg. — Late in the day 
is tirailleurs endeavoured to gain the 
woody mountains which commanded 
the left of the allies, to alarm them with 
the fear of being turned on that side. 
The Prince of Wirtemberg sent some 

Digitized by 



tiraillewrt to driTe them back— The 
EmpeiYM' Alexander sent thither Co- 
lonel Michand, one of hk aides-de- 
camp* to direct the movements ; and 
the French were driven back as far as 
the defile of the mountains by which 
they made the atuck.*— The engage- 
menty which the eneitiy maintained on 
the points before mentioned^ lasted un- 
til ten o'clock at night, with an nnin* 
terrupted fire of artil&ry and musketry. 
It b computed that this affair cost 
him 6000 <nen» as he was obliged to 
hrce the defik of the Spree undsr the 
fire of cannon and small arms* 

In the centre, the village of Bautzen, 
after an obstinate contest, vras occupi- 
ltd at seven in the evening. — Ottdinot 
at last got possession of tbs heights on 
the left of the allies, who then fell 
back on their second position i but 
Soult and Bertrand, who were sent to 
disposses them of the heights in the 
right, failed in their object ; and Ney, 
Liauriston, and Regnier, who were or- 
•dered to pass the Spree, and turn that 
^nk, were equally unsuccessfol* The 
allies kept their ground, and cut off 
Ney from communicating with the rest 
of the French army. 

Such was the issue of the battle of 
the 20th, which was followed next 
day by the sanguinary battle of Wurt- 
chen.— ?And here it weie injustice not 
to pay the virarmest tribute to the 
skill, promptitude, and valour of the 
allies. No confusion of movement 
—no surprise— no disorder occurred, 
although the battle of Bautzen had 
rendered a change in all their dispon- 
tions necessary. All was to he done 
during the nignt, and all was well done. 
Buonaparte was obliged to bring up 
every man of his reserves ; and even 
by his own accounts, from four in the 
morning till three in the afternoon, the 
fortune of the day was in favour of the 

On the 21st, by half-past four in 
the morning, the enemy began by at- 

tacking die leftof the alliea, seconded 
by a brisk fire of tirailleurs whom lie 
had posted in the mountains. He had 
also pushed forward some men to Co* 
nevalde, to annoy the allies upon their 
flank. The Count de Miloradovitch 
and iht Prince of Wirtemberg, how- 
ever, repelled with intrepidity all the 
attacks on this side, which were renew- 
ed with the same vivacity and the same 
success at nud'^y.-^Between six and 
seven o'clock, tlie attack commenced 
by a brisk cannonade, and aamart fire 
of musketry upon the right wing of 
the line also, where a corps was posted 
under the orders of General Barclay de 
Tdly. The enemy was infinitely su- 
perior in numbers, and endeavoured^ 
protected by the forest which covered 
him, to outflank this corps. General 
Barclay de Tolly was posted on the 
heights near Gmaz ; he extended hia 
line during the battle towaida the 
height, situated near Baruth, named 
La Vokft^ulte— It became necessary 
to rein&rce this corps ; and General 
Kkist recdvedorders tocarry his troops 
to that pomt. These generals mwle an 
attack, brisk and weU comUned, and 
forced the enemy to renounce the ad* 
yaofiages which his superiority of num- 
bers had given him. General Bludber 
arrived to support this attack wiUi hia 
two brigades, and by this sudden move- 
ment the enemy was obliged to give up 
his project of tumine the right vring, 
as he had already abandoned that of 
turning the left. 

During all these attacks, the French 
kept up a continual fire of artillery and 
small aims, principally upon the cen- 
tre, upon which they had yet made no 
direct attempt. Suddenly, howerer, 
they assailed the heights of Krecke^ 
vetz, which General Blucher's corpa 
occupied. They took advantaffe of 
the moment when the general left this 
position, with a part of his corps, to 
sustain that of General Barday de 
ToUy. The enemy approached the 

Digitized by 


Chap. IS.] 



heights froin three aidet at once, with 
the greater part of hts foroest which 
had been formed ioto three columns for 
the attack; and thus he<esubli8hed on 
this point a decided siq>eriority. Oe- 
jieral D'York, however, ariivedy aad 
the village of Kreikwits was retakeiu 
The allied troops defended the heights 
with an obstinacy beyond example.— 
Four battalions of the Russian guards 
advanced to sustain Genend Bluoher* 
In the meantimey the left wing under 
the orders of Count Miloradovkch had 
pushed forward, taken many cannon 
from the enemy, and destroyed some 

The conflict became more sangui- 
narjr every moment. The instant was 
arrwed when it was necessary to bring 
all the means of the allies into action, 
and risk all, or put an end to the bat- 
tle,— they detennined upon the latter. 
To expose all to the hazard of a single 
^day would have been to play the game 
of Buonaparte ;— to preserve their for- 
ces, to reap advantages from a war, 
more difficult to the enemy as it was 
prolonged, was that of the allies.— 
They commenced a retreat.— They 
made it in full day-light, under the eve 
of the enemy, as upon a parade, witn- 
out his being able to gain a tingle tro- 
phy I while the combined army had ta- 
ken from him in these three memora- 
ble days, 12 pieces of cannon and 3000 
prisoners, among whom were four ge- 
nerals and many officers of distinction. 

As the French were employed in the 
course of this battle chieny in turning 
the position of their antagonists, their 
loss was severe— -it has been estimated 
at 14/)00 men. The allies admitted 
their own loss to amount to 6000 kill- 
ed and wounded. 

On the 22d, the combat was renew- 
ed near Reinchaback ; but it was in a 
great measure confined to the cavalry 
of the two armies. In the early part 
of the day the French were driven 
back ; but they brought up 16/)00 

cavalry, and the alliei retreated. On 
the 23df in the evening, Buonaparte 
was at Goerlitz, on the Neisse. 

There is a tinflrular passage in the 
French account of these battles. ** We 
could not,'' said Buonaparte, ** take 
any colours, as the enemy always car- 
ries them off the field of battle. We 
have only taken 19 cannon, the enemy 
having blown up his park of artillery 
and caissons ;— and besides, the empe- 
ror keeps his cavalry in reserve till it is 
of sufficient numbers; he wishes to 
spare it.'* 

Theae battles were among the most 
desperate and sanguinary, even of that 
dreadful succession which Europe has 
witnessed. The French stated their 
own loss at 11 or 12,000 men; a 
greater number than they had admit- 
ted even at Borodino. Among the 
slain was Marshal Duroc (Duie of 
Friuli), who held the c^ce of Grand 
Chamberlain of France, and who, in 
all the campaigns, had been closely at- 
tached to tne person of Buonaparte.-^ 
His death was commemoratea by his 
master with a profusion of real or af- 
fected sorrow. 

Buonaparte foQowed up slowly his 
hard-won victory. The allies retired 
uponSchweidnitz, southward through 
Silesia and along the frontier of Bom- 
mia. They thus adhered to their former 
principle of drawing the enemy as far 
as possible from Benin and the central 
Prussian provinces. Their rear-guard 
of cavalry maintained a constant supe- 
riority over that of the enemy, and 
handled him very roughly on several 
occasions. They were reinforced by 
some corps which arrived from the 
Russian frontier, and rendered them as 
powerful as they had been before the 
oattle of Bautzen. Other divisions of 
grreat strength were announced to be 
on their march. The French army, 
meanwhile, not only received no rein- 
forcements, but was obliged to leave 
behind it the coips of Ouunot, for the 

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purpose of opposing that un^ Bu- 
lowy which wi^B acting in front of Ber- 
lin. Some hbts were thrown out as if, 
after the battle of Bautzen, the French 
army would adrance and take posses- 
sion of that capital. Buonaparte, how- 
ever, according to his usual system, 
carried the great body of the army 
with him into Silesia. Oudinot thus 
found himself reduced to an attitude 
strictly defensive, and with difficulty 
maintained the communication between 
Dresden and the grand army. 

Buonaparte, however, obtained some 
advantages. He raised the blockade 
of Glogau, a fortress of great strength^ 

and one of the most important keys of 
the Oder.— He took possession also 
of Breslau, the capital of Silesia.— 
His divisions advanced in front of the 
allied camp at Schweidnitz, and an at- 
tempt would probably have been made 
to force it, had not an event occurred 
which, for a time, interrupted his ope« 
rations* But before proceeding to con- 
sider the armistice, concluded about 
this period, it will be necessary to take 
a short review of the policy of a state^ 
whose leader was destined to act a con« 
spicuous part in the future operations 
of the campaign. 

Digitized by 


Chap. 14.] 




Policy (ifStt>eden*'-^Disseniions betxioixt that Pofwer and France.'^The Smeduk 
Govemment abandons the Continental System, and joins the Alliance of the 
European Powers* 

Thb Swedish government had long 
temporiBed with Baonapartey and en- 
deavoured to avoid the evils towards 
which he was pressing the state, by 
demanding of it an accession to the 
continentiu system and a declaration of 
war afi^ainst England. But when the 
French ruler perceived that no steps 
were taken by the Swedes td aid his 
projects, he shewed how much he 
was mortified, and to what extremities 
be was disposed to carry his vengeance. 
In his famous conference with the Swe- 
dish minister at Paris, he betrayed all 
his impatience — ** You signed the 
peace/' said Buonaparte, *< with me in 
the beginning of the year, — you enga- 
ged yourselves to break off all commu- 
nications with England, — yet you kept 
a minister at London, and an English 
agent in Sweden, until the summer was 
& advanced,— -you did not interrupt 
the ostensible communication by the 
way of Gottenburgh until late, and 
what was the result of it ? That the 
correspondence remained the same, nei- 
ther more nor less active. — ^You have 
vessels in all the ports of England. — 
The English trading vessels besiege 
Gottenburgh— a fine proof that they 

do not enter there !— They exchange 
their merchandize in the open sea, or 
near to the coasts,-— your httle islands 
serve as magazines in the winter sea- 
sons—your vessels openly carry colo- 
nial produce into Germany,— I have 
caused half a score of them to be sei- 
zed at Rostock — Is it possible that 
one can affect thus to benustaken on the 
first principle of the continental sys- 
tem '— You have had the address to 
gain the bad season,— you have time to 
settle your interests with England,-—. 
you have had time to put yourselves 
in a state of defence,— you have still 
the winter before you, — there are no 
longer any neutrals. — England ac- 
knowledges none, nor can 1 acknow- 
ledge them any longer. It is only now, 
that, more and more undeceived with 
respect to Swedif^h politics, I haxe ta- 
ken a decisive step which I will not 
conceal from you. Cannon must be 
fired on the English who approach 
your coasts ; and their merchandize in 
>weden must be confiscated, or you 
must have war with France. I cannot do 
you any great harm. — I occupy Pome- 
rania, and you do not much care about 
it ; but I can cause you to be attack* 

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«d by the Russiaos and by the Danet ; 
and I can confiscate all your vesiek on 
the continent ; and I wiH do it, if 
vithin fifteen days you are not at war 
with England. If within five days af- 
ter the official act of M« Alquier, the 
king has not resolved to be at war with 
England, M. Alquier shall set out im- 
cnediately, and Sweden shall have war. 
with France and all her allies. I have 
not positively demanded the state of war 
before this moment ; but I am now 
f>rcedtoit. Let Sweden frankly range 
herself on the side of England against 
ine and my allies, if such be her inte- 
rest, or let her unite with me against 
England. But the time for hesitation 
is past : when five days have elapsed M. 
Alquier will depart, and X will give 
you your passports.'* 

The singular conferciice from which 
these passages have been selected, was 
followed up hf the execution of the 
threats of the French ruler. Assailed 
by France, by Ruasia, and by Den- 
mark, the Swedish government an- 
nounced, in a manifesto, its adherence 
to the continental system, and declared 
war against Great Britain. All inter- 
course with the British dominions was 
thus prohibited, and the importation 
of colonial produce interdicted. The 
British government was, however, well 
aware of the causes which occasioned 
this manifesto, and these nominal hos- 
tilities made no perceptible difference 
in the relations of this country towards 
Sweden. The declaration of war, how- 
ever, was far from being popular with 
the Swedish nation. Opinions were 
propagated throujghout the kingdom 
that it was the design of Bemadotte to 
enforce the continental system, esta- 
blish the French power in the Baltic, 
and finally, by a war for the recovery 
of Finland, to co-operate with Buona- 
parte in his designs against Russia.*- 
.int Marshal Bernadotte was alive to 
the critical and singular situation in 
which his destiny had placed bim«^»- 

He perceived how great might be 
the influence of Sweden in restoring 
peace, or re-establishing a balance of 

S>wer on the continent of Europe.--^* 
uonaparte soon discovered that his 
former associate in arms, far from hold* 
ing out to him expectations of aid, at a 
time when he required all the strength 
of Sweden to assist him, evidently indi* 
ned to the cause of his adversaries. It 
was impossible, indeed, that Sweden 
should remain in a state of neutrality. 
Bemadotte accordingly addressed 
the French ruler in a language which 
was sufficiently indicative of his senti- 
ments. ** Sweden," he said, ** had re» 
solved to declare war against England, 
notwithstanding every thing which her 
safety opposed to that measure. la 
the sad condition to which the last war 
.reduced her, she neither should nor 
.could aspire but after a long peace.-— 
It afforded the only prospect of regain- 
ing) by agriculture and commerce, the 
losses she had sustained,— of re-esta- 
blishini^ by degrees her finances^-^f 
recruitmff iier military system, and im- 
proving her administration. Yet Swe- 
den had just declared war ;«-«-8he bad 
hazarded this step whhout a single 
battalion ready to march, — ^without ar- 
senals or magazines {—and what was 
still worse, without a single sous to 
provide for the expences ofso great an 
enterprise. Sweden, indeed, possesses ia 
herself the materials of a great force ;— • 
her inhabitants are by nature warriors, 
— her constitution ^ows of 80,000 
men being levied ; and the male .po- 
pulation of the country is such, that 
this levy can be easily raised. But 
armies can only be supported by war ; 
and a great military force, purely de- 
fensive, is an e&pence wbicD Swedes 
could not support without forei|^ 
aid. The constituUonal laws forbid 
the king from imp^siw new taxes 
without the consent of the genefal 
states; and (he war with Ei^gknd had 
just destroyed oae of the iprio^pal 

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tiruicfaet of public revenoe— >the pro- 
duce of the customSy amounting to 
oiore than dx millions of francs a-year. 
The contributions now in arrear, and 
the confiscations made by France} fell 
upon Swedish subjects^ and not upon 
foreigners^ who took the precaution hf 
ensuring payment for the goods im- 
ported. The situation of Sweden^'' ' 
continued the Crown Prince^ ** was 
most alanmng. Nature seems to have 
destined Sweden and France to live in 
harmony ; and if she had refused Swe- 
den richesy she had endowed her with 
^ralour^ and all the qualities requisite 
lor the execution of great designsv— 
There was in Sweden but one wish, 
that of being sincerely in accord with 
France, and of participatine in her 
^ory— -but Sweden had not the means* 
She was reduced to the most deplora- 
ble state ; and was without any means 
of soppordng the war which she had 
just delated. Yet the government had 
redoubled its efforts in so violent a cri- 
sis ; but it was not in the power of the 
King of Sweden to extend the system 
of confiscations, as the constitution 
guarantees the rights and property of 
every individuaL'* 

Notwithstanding these remonstran- 
ces, Buonaparte demanded that Swe- 
den should place at his disposal a suf- 
ficient number of sailors to complete 
the crews of four ships of the ^rest 
fleet* The French agent, in making 
this application to the Swedish mini- 
ster, observed,— **« It would be suffici- 
ent to meet the desire of the emperor, 
if the number of officers, masters, ma- 
rines, and sailors, did not CTceed 2000. 
The emperor will charge himself with 
all the expence of their journey, and 
every precaution will be taken in or- 
der that the marines and sailors may 
be properly supported, and the officers 
fully contented with their treatment. 
In the cjritical state in which the Swe- 
dish finances are at this present mo- 
loeotyit will, petitq^s, be agreeable to 

his majesty, to diminish the expences 
of his marine, without, however, le»» 
ving inactive the taknts and courage 
of his seamen. The good offices which 
the emperor requires of his majesty 
the King of Sweden have already been 
performed by Denmark. His imperial 
majesty is convinced that he has not 
too much presumed wx>n the friend- 
ship of a power attached for such a 
length of time to France, by a reci- 
procity of interest and good-will, whick 
has never ceased to exist." 

The reply of the Baron d*£nges- 
trom, the Swedish minister, to this 
conununication deserves notice. ** The 
constitutional laws of the state," said 
he, ** prevent the king from acquie*- 
cing of himself in the emperor's de« 
mand concerning the tiXXX) seamen.««- 
Rivalling Denmark in the desire to 
contribute to the accomplishment of 
his imperial and royal majesty's views, 
the king, nevertheless, does not think 
that the example of that country^ 
where the will' of the kmg is an abso* 
lute law, can be applicable to Sweden. 
In consequence of tne late events which 
have placed his majesty on the throne, 
a constitutional compact has been re- 
newed between the sovereign and the 
nation, which it is not in the power of 
any person to infnng|e. His majesty, 
in consequence, and in the most lively 
manner, regrets that the good office 
which the emperor requires of him 
should precisely fall on a matter which 
does not depend on his own will. N* 
new levy can be made, according to 
the tenour of the constitution, but with 
the consent of the sUtes. Those to 
which they have already consented ex* 
pressly pre-suppose th^ bebg intend- 
ed for the defence of the country ; and 
the number of common seamen is so 
much diminished since the loss of Fin« 
land, that they are scarcely sufficieot 
for the service of the navy, especially 
under the present circumstances. But 
if the king could, as'he i4%ht wish.t« 

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do« succeed in putting aside those ties 
which are imposed on him by the laws 
of the state, and the rights of the citi- 
sens, yet his majesty fears that the 
2000 Swedish seamen transferred to 
Brest, would not entirely fulfil the just 
expectations of his imperial majesty. 
Attached to his barren soil, to his do- 
siestic relations and habits, the Swe- 
dish soldier could not withstand the in- 
fluence of a southern sky. He would 
be ready to sacrifice every thing in 
defence of his home ; but when far 
away, and not immediately combat- 
ing for it, his heart would only beat 
for his return to his country. He 
would, consequently, carry with him 
into the French ranks that inquietude 
^nd discouragement, which destroy 
the finest armies more than the steel of 
their enemies. With regard to the of- 
ficers of the navy, there is no obstacle 
mgainst their serving in France, and his 
majesty with pleasure permits them to 
profit by the generous offer of his im- 
perial and royal majesty.'* — Such were 
the powerful reasons assigned by the 
Swedish minister for refusing to an- 
swer the demands of Buonaparte ; but 
they were stated in vain to his unbend- 
ing mind. 

When Sweden decided upon em- 
bracing the continental policy, and de- 
claring war against Great- Britain, she 
avoided a contest which must have 
proved unfortunate ; her wounds were 
•till bleeding ; and it was necessary 
for her to make great sacrifices. But 
her commerce was instantly reduced to 
a mere coasting trade, and greatly suf- 
fered from this state of war. Priva- 
■ teers under the French flag, in the 
meantime, took advantage ot her con* 
fidence in treaties, to capture, one after 
another, nearly fifty of her merchant- 
men, till at last the Swedish flotilla 
received orders to protect her flag and 
her Just commerce against piracies, 
whicb could scarcely be avowed by any 
govcrnmenU As the depredations of 

the French privateers on Swedish ves- 
sels were still continued, the Swedish 
envoy at Paris stated to the French 
minister the immense losses which 
thence resulted to his nation, and en- 
tered a strong remonstrance ; but he 
could never obtain the restoration of 
the captured vessels. Affairs were in 
this singular condition, when, with the 
view of. possessing a pledge which 
might influence the conduct of the 
Swedish government in the war about 
to commence with Russia, Buonaparte 
seized Swedish Pomerania. In the 
month of January 1812, 20,000French 
troops, under General Fnaot, entered 
that province, and on the 26th took 
possession of the capital. When the 
Swedish commandant, Peyron, inform- 
ed the French general, that it was his 
intention to resist the occupation of the 
Isle of Rugen, the latter replied, by- 
making Peyron his prisoner. Rugea 
wasafterwardsoccupied by the French ; 
the vessels and packets on the coast 
were detained for their service, and the 
French colours were hoisted in place 
of the Swedish. A fleet, vnth Ge- 
neral £ngelbart on board, arrived at 
Stralsund in the month of February, 
to ascertain the state of the French 
troops in Pomerania, and to bring off 
those of Sweden ; but the fleet was not 
permitted to have any communication 
with the shore. 

The attention of Europe was now 
fixed upon Sweden. Her conduct as- 
sumed a more determined aspect, and 
it was generally believed that the Crovi^a 
Prince would become a competitor in 
the field with his former associate in 
arms. Great expectations of success 
were therefore indulged on the suppo- 
sition, that, as Bemadotte had joined 
the allies, this circumstance must be a 
decisive indication of the hopes enter- 
tained by that wary general, respecting^ 
the result of the campaign, since he 
must have been fully acquainted with 
the personal character ot Buonaparte^ 

Digitized by 


Chap. 14.] 



and the reil extent of the French re* 
sources. — Notwithstanding the dis* 
trust, howeTer» which Bemadotte now 
felt as to the views of Buonaparte, he 
still appears to have heen anxious to 
prevent the miseries which were ap- 
proaching the nations of the conti* 

On the 14th of March, 1812, he ac- 
cordingly addressed himself to Buona* 
parte, and complained that the arro- 
gance of the French minister in Swe- 
den had offended every one ; his com- 
munications bore no character of those 
regards which are mutually due from 
crowned heads to each other. *^ Ba- 
ron Alqnier,'' said Bemadotte^" spoke 
Bke a Roman pro-consul, without re- 
flecting that he was not speaking to 
slaves.^' That minister had, ttiere* 
fore, been the first cause of the distrust 
which Sweden had discovered with re- 
gard to Buonaparte's intentions con- 
cerning her. Subsequent events had 
added weight to it. Sweden could 
not but perceive in Buonaparte an un- 
merited mdifference towards her inte- 
rests ; and she owed it to herself to 
provide against the storm which w,as 
about to break out on the continent.— 
Speaking of the war with Russia, the 
Crown Prince observed, " if your ma- 
jesty thinks proper that the king should 
cause the Emperor Alexander to be in- 
formed of the possibility of a reconci- 
liation, 1 augur sufficiently well, from 
the magnanimity of that monarch, to 
dare assure you, that he will willingly 
agree to overtures, equitable at once 
for your empire and for the north. If 
an event so unexpected and so univer- 
sally desired could take place, how 
many nations of the continent would 
bless your majesty I Their gratitude 
would be augmented by reason of the 
horror which inspires them against the 
return of a scourge which has lain so 
heavy on them, and the ravages of 
.which have left such cruel traces be- 
hind.''— -Sweden, he observed, was al- 

ready justified for the engagements the 
might make with theenemies of France^ 
by the menaces and innults of that 
power. The reiteratedattacks of France 
upon the Swedish commerce ; the car- 
rying off nearly 100 vessels destined 
for mendly ports, and subji ct to France 
— the sequestration placed upon Swe« 
dish property in Dantzic and other 
ports m the Baltic ; and at last the in- 
vasion of Pomerania, done in contempt 
of treaties, must fully acquit her m 
the eyes of the world. Yet how just 
soever the complaints which she had 
against France, she did not at this 
time desire war, and did not like to be 
forced to make it, even to preserve her 
independence and laws. She was rea- 
dy to listen to any conciliatory pro* 
positions which might be made to 
her.— «* If Sweden was convinced," 
said the Baron de Engerstrom, in a tone 
of irony, which must have touched the 
pride of Buonaparte, f* that the Em- 
peror Alexander armed to subjugate 
Europe, to subject every thing to the 
Russian system, and extend his statea 
to the north of Germany, Sweden 
would not hesitate a moment to de- 
clare and fight against this ambition ; 
she would be directed by the obvious 
principle of policy which should make 
her fear the increase of so dangerous a 
power ; but if, on the contrary, Rus- 
sia only bore arms in her own defence, 
to preserve her frontiers, her ports, and 
even her capital, from all foreign in- 
vasion, if in /this she did but obey the 
mandate oT necessity, it was for the in- 
terest of Sweden not to hesitate a 
moment in defending the independence 
of the north. Sweden cannot flatter 
herself with being able, as a second 
power, to avoid that servitude with 
which France threatens states of the 
first order. A war undertaken to re- 
conquer Finland would not be for the 
interests of Sweden. Europe is in- 
formed of the causes which made her 
lose it. To undertake a war to rei> 

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pottess her of it^ would be not to 
undentand the interests of the Swe« 
di^ people* Such a conqoett would 
occasion expcaoee which Sweden is not 
in a cooditx>n to support, and the ac- 
quisitioD, admitting that it could be 
accomplished, would never compensate 
ibr the risk which she must incur. 
The English, while she was pursuinfl' 
this wild career, might give her faUu 
blows ; her ports would he burnt or 
destroyed, and her maritime towns re* 
duced to ashes. Besides, so soon as a 
change should be effected in the poli- 
tical system of Russia, whether after 
auccess or defeat, her ancient views 
upon Finland would not £ul to make a 
disastrous war weigh heavy upon Swe* 
den. The gulph of Bothnia separates 
the two states ; no motive of division 
exists, and the national hatred daily dis- 
appears in consequence of the pacific 
dispositions of the two sovereigns. If 
Trance will acknowledge the armed 
neutrality of Sweden, a neutrality which 
must carry with it the right of open- 
ing her ports with equal advantages 
Ibr all powers, she has no motive to 
interfere in the events which may oc- 
cur. Let France restore Pomerania | 
but if ^e should refuse this restitution, 
which, at the same time, the rights of 
nations and the faith of treaties de- 
nand, Sweden will accept for this 
object only, the mediation of the em- 
perors of Austria and Russia. Swe- 
^n will agree to a reconciliation com* 
patible with the national honour and 
with the interests of the north." 

The government of Sweden, per- 
suaded tnat all the preparations inade 
by Russia were for a purpose purely 
defensive, and intended but to prepare 
for the Russian empire that armed 
neutrality, which Sweden wished, in 
concert with Russia, to establish, en- 
gaged to use all its efforts to prevent a 
rupture till a period should be fixed for 
Swedish, French, Austrian, and Rus- 
sian plenipotentiaries to meet, and agree^ 

in a frieadfy manner, upon a system of 
pacification, which might insure to 
lEurope a durable repose. Such were 
^e sentiments which the Swedish go- 
vernment avowed till the last moment^ 
when it was forced into an open rupture 
with France, by the obstinate violence 
of Buonaparte. It is impossible, there* 
fore, to accuse Sweden of precipitation 
—it is unfair to charge her witn enmi'- 
ty towards France, and absurd to pre* 
tend, that she did not scrupulously- 
maintain her faith, until every obliga- 
tion was dissolved by the insolence and 
perfidy of her enemies. 

On the 20th of April, 1812, the Kin^ 
of Sweden assembled the diet of ham 
kingdom at Orebro, and opened the 
sitting by a speech, in which heannoun'- 
ced, in terms by no means equivocal, the 
policyof his government. ** I have call« 
ed you together,'^ said he, <* at a mo* 
ment when great and important oc* 
currences, out of our native country* 
seem to threaten Europe with new 
misfortunes. Guarded by her situa- 
tion from the necessity of paying obe* 
dience to foreign sway, which possi- 
bly might not accord with her own in- 
terests, Sweden has every thing to 
hope from unity, valour, and conduct ; 
everything tofear if she givesherself up 
tointestinedivision."— liealso announ- 
ced his determination to unite with hia 
son, ( Bemadotte) in defiance of threatt 
from without, and possibly of opiniona 
at home, to maintain the liberty and 
independence of the country. — ^The 
Crown Prince, in his speech, addressed 
the following remark partictdarty to 
the burghers ; ** you will shew what 
a nation is capable of effecting, when 
determined to free its commercial in- 
dustry from vJll/areigH yokes,"— thua 
clearly intimating his opinion of the 
continental system. 

A Russian general had already been 
sent on a mission to Stockholm $ Mr 
Thornton, the British minister, al« 
though appearing in no public chanio- 

Digitized by 


CmAT. 14^3 



Cery hadJoiAed hini* But toon after the 
s m wem kh ng of the diet, orders were cKs- 
patched to the coasts to afford British 
Alps hi distress the assistance which 
the7 night require ; and Mr Thornton 
was afterwards received at Orebro as 
tiieaccredited minister of Great-Britain 
at the Swedish court. About the same 
time a decree relative to commerce was 
israedy which announced a dep^uture 
from the continental system* 

On the 18th of August the Swedish 
£et terminated its sittbgs- The king 
ag^ain took ocfcasion to observe, that 
BO foreign pom^er could loosen those 
bonds oif umon« which maintain the 
in de p ende n ce of Sweden. He also in- 
Ibrmed the diet, that, confident in the 
maxim, that strong defensive prepara* 
tions are the best means to ensure the 
tran quiHity of a state, he had found it 
necessary to pay particular attention 
to the miKtary iorce of the kingdom ; 
and he farther announced, that on the 
18th oTJolj he had concluded a peace 
with the Kmg of Great-Britain, which 
bad been ratified on the 16th of Au- 

fast Bemadotte also addressed the 
iet, and commended the coolness main- 
tained in the deUberations of that as-* 
aembly, ** amid thedbof arms resound- 
ing from the D wina to the Tagus, and 
the animosity of their neighbours.*'— 
He added, ** that should there be no 
hope that Sweden might pursue her 
way in peace, then will your king 
have recourse to your manly courage, 
and our watch-word will be-^God, 
fiberty, and our native country/' 

A treaty had for some time been 
proposed between Sweden and Rus* 
aia ; and a Russian general was at 
Stockholm for the purpose of opening 
the negociations. Some difficulties, 
hovrever, having arisen, a personal in- 
terview between the Emperor of Rus- 
na and Bemadotte was oecided upon* 
These personages accordingly met 
at Abo, in Finland, on the ^8th of 
Augutt ; the result ef ib» cQufercnce 

was satisfactory to both parties ; and 
they agreed to make common cause 
against the measures of France. With 
a view to the security of Sweden, it 
vras stiptilated that Norway should, h$ 
the first instance, be conquered fur that 
power; after which, a diversion by 
their united forces should be made on 
the continent. The rtsuh of this in- 
terview was, however, for some time 
prudently oaacealed* 

The measures adopted bj Sweden in 
1812 had a considerable influence upoq 
the Russian campaign of that year* 
The tnx^s assembled in Swedish ports 
detained a considerable French torct 
in the north of Germany. By dispen- 
sing with the immediate fiiKhnent of 
the engagements undertaken by Rus» 
sia, tl^ Swedish government set at 
liberty a force of 18,000 men, which 
had been assembled in Poland, and 
which was afterwards sent to join the 
army of Wittgenstem, ai\d contributed 
materially to the destrnctipn of the 
French on the Berezina. 

In the beginning of the year t815* 
the Swedish government resolved on 
decisive measures, and explained it» 
views to all Etirope. The numerous 
injuries which France had inflicted up- 
on Sweden were clearly explained and 
ably commented on.— ♦^ The manifesta- 
tions of iU-'will, on the part of France, 
it was observed, which, during the 
course of 1810, bad often threatened 
serious pretensions, at first were con* 
finedto therigid mainteaanceof thecon* 
tinentai system in Pomerania, but were 
at last openly directed against the inde- 
pendent existence of Sweden* A de- 
mand was made to exclude the Ameri- 
cans from Swedish ports. The govern- 
ment succeeded by perseverance and 
moderation in averting the conse- 
'quences* It was to be presumed^ 
however, that this fortunate situation 
aflbrdbg Sweden the means of recruit- 
inor her strength, already exhausted by 
a destmetivc war, would aot be of anx 

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long duration. Buonaparte had laid 
down for subjugatt^ Europe a peremp- 
tory rule, tliat he would acknowledge 
as the friends of France only the ene- 
mies of Great Britain ; that neutrality, 
formerly the bulwark of the weaker 
states, amidst the contests of the most 
powerful, no longer had any real 
meaning; and that all the combina- 
tions of policy, as well as every feel- 
ing of dignity, must disappear before 
the omnipotence of arms. 

" Scarcely was the declaration of war 
by Sweden against England published, 
and the commerce of Sweden abandon* 
cd to the discretion of the British ca- 
binet, when the French minister began 
to develope a plan, pursued without 
interruption, to force Sweden to take 
upon herself the same obliffatious which 
ba e brought ho many misfortunes on 
the confederated states. A consider- 
able body of seamen was at ^t de- 
manded for the purpose of manning 
the French fleets at Brest,— next, a 
oorps of Swedish troops to be in the 
pay of France,*— then tne introduction 
mto Sweden of a tanflF of 50 per cent, 
on colonial produce— -and, finally, the 
establishment of French douaniers at 
Gottenburgh. All these demands ha- 
ving been rejected, the consequence 
was, that tlie measures of the French 
government towards Sweden soon as- 
sumed a hostile character. 

** Soon after his arrival, M. Alquier, 
thr French aeent at Stockholm, spoke 
of the nt cesbity of a closer alliance be- 
tween Sweden and France ; aud though 
lie received a poUte answer, the reply 
had no efiect. He then proposed an 
alliance between Sweden, Denmark, 
and the Grand Duchy of Warsaw, 
under the protection and guarantee of 
France. This proposal had for its 
object to create a confederation of the 
north, similar in its ob^gations and in 
its object to that which combined the 
Strength of Germany under French 

domination. In the iBean time the 
season fit for navigation arrived, and 
with it the capture of Swedish vessels 
by French privateers. The Swedish 
minister at raris demanded redress for 
the injuries done to Swedish com* 
merce ; representations with the same 
view were addressed to the French 
minister Alquier ; his answers had all 
the marks of a dictator, the character 
which he had resolved to play in Swe^ 

** If the English government viewed 
with a pitying eye the situation of 
Sweden, and did not consider her de- 
claration of war as a sufficient motive 
for directing hostilities against Swe- 
dish commerce — ^if this tomant system 
facilitated to a certain degree a vent 
for the .immense stores of Swedish 
iron, and so far obviated the pernicious 
effects of the war— still Sweden could 
not expect that the Frendi govern* 
ment would have built its accusatioDs 
against her on the forbearance of Eng- 
land. The Swedes were, on the con- 
trary, rather entitled to hope, that the 
French ruler would see with satisfac- 
tion their country treated with forbear^ 
ance by a power, which had so many 
means of annoying Sweden. 

« The depredations of the French 
privateers on S wedish vessels were daily 
augmenting. The Swedish minister 
at rans represented, in suitable termsy 
the losses which thence resulted to the 
nation ; but the prize courts of France 
alwayb decided in favour of the cap- 
tors. The privateers being thus se- 
cure of impunity, had a fine field for 
exercising their piracies. Not satisfied 
with condemning as good prizes Swe- 
dish vessels under the pretence that 
they were provided with English li- 
cences—not satisfied with capturing 
in the Sound small coasting vessels la* 
den with provisions, and the produce 
of the native manufactures — not con- 
tented with seizing such as were in 

Digitized by 


Chap. 14.] 



Gcff«B«i porta waiciiig for cai|;ofc»-— 
Fiance even treated as pritoners of 
wv dlie Swedish tearaen. They were 
pal HI troiMf and sent to Antwerp and 
Toeloo^ there to serve is the French 
tedUfm V^hcn the season of the year 
agaaa reakowed the English fleet from 
t£e Bidticy the French privateers re- 
arwed their acts of violence wkh more 
activity than ever. Sweden then felt 
heradt under the necessity of ordering 
her macine to seise those {Mantes who 
bad annoyed her commerce from port 
to port. The French privateers, which 
iiuulted the Swedish coasts, were cha- 
sed away. The Swedish government 
kari^ that the Prince of Eckmuhl, 
commanding the French army in the 
xMu-th of Germany, had announced 
that he wonld order his troops to en- 
ter Pometania» and the island of Ru- 
gcn^ ao soon as the ice should permit 
hinu The instructions which the Swe- 
dish commandant had received ought 
to have induced him to defend the 
German possessions against every fo- 
reign aggression. But unfortunately 
cnnniae prevailed over duty ; the cou- 
rage of the Swedish troops was para- 
lyzed by the weakness of their chief, 
zmd Pomerania waa invaded. The 
ita which took place in that pro- 
had been.raaae public,^ that it 
^ be impossible to mistake the 
triK nature of that extraordinary mea- 
me.— The^ insolence of the French 
cabinet waa unabated, and every thing 
aaaoonced an approaching rupture be- 
tween that power and Kussia* The 
season approached when the British 
fleets would revisit the Baltic, and 
there V198 reason to presume that the 
Bricbh ministry, in return for the to- 
knuKe granted to Swedish commerce, 
would demand a conduct on the part 
of Sweden more decidedly pacific. 
Sweden in consequence saw herself ex- 
Bosedy either to the resentment of 
riance, or to the hostilities of Great 
Britain, supporud by the court of 

Russia. Denmark also bad already 
assumed a menadng attitude. 

After the annexation of the duchy 
of Oldenbttrgh to the French empire» 
it was known, with certainty, that dif- 
ferences both on that point and on the 
continental system had taken place be- 
tween the courts <^ Russia and France. 
The preparations for war, which were 
made on both sides, indicated open 
hostilities. France, however, had ne« 
ver testified the smallest desire, nor 
n^e any overture to Sweden, tending 
to engage her in a war with Russia^ 
Although all friendlv relations must 
have have been regarded as broken by 
the occupation of Pomerania, a pro* 
position was at last made, not officially» 
but through a channel not less authen«i 
tic on the part of the French govern- 
ment. After givinsr a lon^ exposi- 
tion of the pretended deviations of 
Sweden from the continental system, 
which, it was said, had at last com* 
pelled Buonaparte to order his troops 
to enter Pomerania, without, however, 
occupying it,the French ruler demand- 
ed that a new declaration of war should 
be issued against Eneland ; that all 
communication with English crdisars 
should be severely profibited ; that 
the coasts of the Sound should ,bo 
armed with batteries, and that English 
vessels should be fired upon with ar« 
tillery. Finally, that Sweden should 
organize an army of from 30 to 40|000 
men, to attack Russia at the moment 
when hostiUties should commence be* 
tween that power and France. 

But Sweden could not overlook 
the fact, that a state of active warfare 
with Russia, the necessary consequence 
of which must be open hostilities vnth 
Great Britain, surpassed her strength 
and resources ; that the presence of 
an English fleet in the Baltic would 
paralyze, during summer, the Swedish 
operations ; and that, since the treaty 
with Russia, there existed no ground 
of complaintagainstthat power; That* 

^ t 

Digitized by 




in the mean time, the Swedish coasts 
and ports would be abandoned to the 
vengeance of Enghmd ; that the com- 
plete stagnation of commerce, and the 
interruption of the coasting trade, 
would occasion general misery ; that 
the pressing wants of Sweden with 
respect to grain, imperiously required 
pacific relations both with Russia and 
England ; that the sudden termination 
of war between France and Russia 
would infallibly leave Sweden without 
any auraieutation of territory, espe- 
cially if the Swedish army, in conse- 
quence of the war with England, were 
prevented from leaving its own con- 
fines ; and that such preparations, 
and a single year of war, would require 
an expenditure of from 12 to 15 mil- 
lions of rix-dollars. A multitude of 
other considerations determined the 
Swedish government to look to no- 
thing but the happiness of the people 
and the prosperity of the kingdom ; 
and with this view the ports were 
opened to the flags of all nations. 

Ancient habits had long induced 
Sweden to consider France as her na- 
tural ally. This opii)ion of times past 
^— these impressions generally received 
• — long acted powerfully on the minds 
of her rulers. But when France wish- 
ed to interdict peninsular Sweden from 
traversing the seas which almost sur- 
round her, and to deprive her of the 
right of ploughing the waves which 
wash her shores, it became the duty 
of the government to defend the rights 
and interests of the nation — to avoid 
the situation of those powers, which, 
by their submission to France, found 
themselves without ships, without com- 
merce, and withont finances. The 
alliance of France, while it exacted in 
the first instance the loss of indepen- 
dence, conducted by degrees to all the 
sacrifices which annihilate the prosperi- 
ty of states. To become her ally, it 
was necessary for Sweden to have no 
connection with England, and to make 

good the loss of the revenue of cuttomsy 
and of the profits of commerce, bV 
imports always increasing. All thn 
must have been done merely for the 
purpose of supporting the wars into 
which the capridous politici of France 
had drawn her during the last eight 
years. Had Sweden submitted to the 
demands of France, her tons would 
have been seen fighting, for a caus^ 
the most unhallowed, in Spain, along 
with Germans, Itatians, and Poles. 
They would have been seen even in 
Turlcey, had Buonaparte conquered 
the Emperor Alexander. If, to ae- 
dure the destinies of Sweden, by esta- 
blishing her safety for the present, and 
security for the future, the government 
was compelled to put the armies in 
motion,' this was not dotie with a view 
of conquering provinces, useless to the 
prosperity of the Scandinavian penin- 
sula. The independence of that pe- 
ninsula >Bra8 the sole object ; and no 
sacrifice could be reckoned too coetly 
by the Swedes to attain that great and 
important result. Sweden rejected the 
degrading treaty which France tried to 
maJte her subscribe ; she placed her- 
self above a Subservient and versatile 
t>olicy ; and she did not fear to make 
her appeal to the courage, the loyalty, 
the patriotism, and the honour of her 
children. The government hlid fbnn« 
ed a just opinion of the Swedes, and ita 
reward was found in the unbounded 
Confidence which they placed in Ha 

This devdopement of the views of 
Sweden was followed by a treaty be- 
twixt that power and Great Britain, 
which was signed at Stockholm on the 
8d March, 1813. By this treaty, Swe- 
den bound herself to employ a corps of 
80,000 men against the common ene- 
my, to act wiui the troops which were 
to be furnished by Russia and Prusaia s 
and to grant to Great Britain, for 2p 
years, the right of entrepot in the 
ports of Gottenburgh, Carlsham, and 

Digitized by 


Chap. 14.] 



Stralstind. Great Britain on the other 
hand acceded to engagements already 
sabdsting betwixt Sweden and Rus- 
sia, — Abound herself not to oppose the 
annexation of Norway to Sw^en» but 
to afford the necessary naval co-opera- 
tion should the King of Denmark re* 
fuse to accede to the grand alliance. 
The British government also agreed 
to grant Sweden a subsidy of one mil- 
lion sterling, for the service of the 
campaign of this year, and to cede to 
her the possession of the island of Gua- 
daloupe in the West Indies. In re« 
turn tor this last concession, Sweden 
bound herself to observe the capitula- 
tion under which the island submitted 
to Great Britain — to prevent her sub- 
jects from en paging in the slave-trade— 
to exclude snips of war from Guada- 
loupe belonging to the enemies of 
England — to protect British subjects 
and their property in the colony, and 
not to alienate the island without the 
consent of Great Britain. 

In deciding upon the justice and 
pohcy of these proceedings, it is neces- 
sary to take a general view of the state 
of Europe at ttie period when they oc- 
curred.— While the storm of French 
invasion was hanging over the Russian 
dominions, two things were required 
to give that empire a chance of ulti- 
mate sucess ; — peace with Turkey, 
and the co-operation of Sweden. The 
first object was effected, in a great 
measure, by the mediation of Eng- 
land ; the other was scarcely less im- 
portant. It was the interest of France 
to use all the means in her power to 
jecure the alliance and co-operation 
of Sweden in the attack upon Rus- 
sia ; and Buonaparte, in his usua) man-* 
ner, tried the effect of intimidation, 
by seizing the Swedish Pomeranian 
dominions. When he found that threats 
and insults were unavailing, he chan- 
ged his policy, and made the most se- 
ducing offers to the Swedish govern- 
ment. The restoration of Finland, 

and other advantages; were proposed 
through the medium of neutral powers, 
and every attempt was made to gaia 
the accession of Sweden to the French 
system ; but even these insidious of- 
fers bailed of effect. Much difference 
of opinion existed among Rusttan 
statesmen as to the real value of the 
conquests which that power had been 
making for the last twenty or thirty 
years ; but none of them ever doubt- 
ed that the acquisition of Finland was 
highly important, with a view even to 
the security of the Russian dominions. 
It was reasonable that Sweden should 
have some compensation for so mate- 
rial a loss, when about to embark in 
what was conddered as almost a dee* 
perate cause. She had engaged to 
unite with Russia against the common 
enemy ; but in these circumstances h 
was necessary to her safety that Nor^ 
way should be added to her dominions ; 
and it was agreed, therefore, between 
Russia and Sweden, that these powera 
should, in the first instance, make com* 
mon cause for that purpose, and after- 
wards bring their united force to bear 
against France and her aUies. 

It may be asked — were Russia and 
Sweden justified in entering into these 
engagements,*— was Great Britain jus- 
tifiable in acceding to such a treaty— 
and was it wise or politic to accede to 
it ? It seems clear that Russia and 
Sweden were justified in entering into 
these engagements. It is an import- 
ant fact, which has often been kept out 
of view, that Denmark formed part of 
the confederacy against Russia. Den- 
mark engaged to assist the object of 
Buonaparte by occupying the north 
of Germany with her troops ; this was 
as complete a co-operation with France 
as if the Danish troops had marched 
to Smolensko and Moscow. The 
countries which Denmark agreed to 
occupy were in alliance with Russia ; 
the duchy of Oklenberg, for instance, 
had been in so^e degree the origin of 

Digitized by 



the ktt dispute between Russia and 
France. Denmark thought it for her 
interest to adhere to France ; she was 
fbllowingr the steps and co-operating 
in the objects of that power, — ^Thc 
accession of Great Britain to the en- 
gagements between Russia and Swe- 
den may easily be defended, for Eng- 
land was at war with Denmark ; Da- 
nish seamen manned the French fleets ; 
Danish ports were shut to the Eng- 
lish ; Danish privateers covered the 
tchs in that quarter, annoying the trade 
of England. Was not Great Britain 
as much justified in conquering Nor- 
way as in conquering any other place 
belonging to her enemies ? The pro- 
ject oF annexing Norway to Sweden 
was not new. Sweden bad lost Fin- 
landy by her refusal to accede to the 
treaty of Tilsit, — a treaty by which 
Sweden was involved in a war both 
"with Russia and France. An expedi- 
tion sailed from this coimtryt und^ the 
late Sir John Moore, toco-operate with 
Sweden in the conquest of Norway, 
as a compensation for the loss of Fin- 
land. As Sweden had co-operated so 
powerfully with England, and evinced 
m determination to support her inde- 
pendence, she had a strong claim upon 
the liberality of this country to pro- 
mote her objects in any legitimate con- 
test. Great Britain was fuHyjusHfietlf 
therefore, in making common cause 
with Russia and Sweden. 

The polio/ of acceding to the en- 
gagements between these two powers 
was not less manifest. No object, ex- 
cept the independence of the Spanish 
peninsula, seemed so important to 
Great Britain, as that Norway should 
belong to a power able and willing 
to preserve its independence against 
France. Norway is a maritime coun- 
tryi full of harbours, from which Eng- 
land procures a considerable portion of 
her naval stores. Not that for this rea- 
son, solely, the crown of Denmark 

ought to have been deprived of thk 
appenda^ of the monarchy ; but if it 
could vnth justice be placed in the 
hands of a power more vrilling to co- 
operate in the great cause of Europe, 
it was highly desirable, vrith a view to 
the interests of this country, that such 
a change should be accomplished— 
The British eovemment was complete* ' 
ly justified m acceding to the treatT 
for annexing Norway to Sweden ; it 
wasfor the interest of England that Nor« 
wav and Sweden should oe imited ; for 
so long as Denmark declined to sacri- 
fice her German dominions for her in« 
sular independence, her dependence on 
France was inevitable. But it had been 
the policy of Denmark (whether wise 
or not signifies little) to ding to her 
German possessions ; and while Nor« 
way was annexed to Denmark, it was 
therefore under the controul of France. 
In the existing state of Europe it was 
most important^ vrith a riew to the in- 
terests ^of Great Britain, that Norway 
should belong to Sweden. Even in 
the course of the autumn of 1812, a 
Swedish force in the north kept a 
French Marshal in check ; and al- 
though an engagement bad been enter- 
ed into by Russia to employ a consi- 
derable force solely for Swedish ob- 
jects, yet at the very moment, when 
Buonaparte was marching to Smolens- 
ko, 18,000 Russians, who were in Fin- 
land, were released by the friendship 
of Sweden, and left at liberty to act 
against the French. The destruction 
of the French army on the Beresina 
may be ascribed to the junction of this 
Russian corps withjWittgenstein ; and 
to the co-operation and g^ood- will of 
the Swedes, resisting, as they had, all 
the ouers of France, and making com- 
mon cause with Russia, might the sue* 
cesses of the Russians in that quarter 
be ascribed. The Russians felt this, 
and were anxious that Great Britain 
should accede to the agreement sub- 

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Chap. 14.] 



•bting between them and Sweden.— 
She did accede, and the most benefktal 
resnltf were secured. 

While Sweden was resisting France 
mt all pohits, Denmark, so far from ex- 
hibiting in the hour of danger any ma- 
nifestations of good-will to the com*- 
mon cause, was actively concurring 
with the common enemy against Rus- 
aia. When Buonaparte was' marching 
io foil force towards the Russian capi- 
tal, Denmark was appealed to by the 
Russian government, and answered^ 
that she was determined to stand or 
£dl with France. Was it immoral^ 
then, to refuse to forego the aid of an 
important ally — for what P out of ten- 
derness to a power which had exerted 
all its means of injury against us !— 
There can neither be sense nor policy 
in any line of conduct, except that 
which serves to conciliate our friends 
and to punish our enemies. After the 
eracuation of Moscow by the French, 
the Danish ambassador at St Peters- 
borgh had indeed shewn some disposi- 
tion towards a reconciliation. But what 
was the consequence ^ When this het 
waa known at Stockholm, endeavours 
were made on the part of Sweden to 
follow up the supposed pacific dispo- 
sition of Denmark ; but the protest 
sions of the Danish envoy were in- 
stantly disavowed by the government 
at Copenhagen. Perhaps the ambas- 
sador acted without instructions ; or^ 
if he was instructed to act in this 
manner at the tune of Buonaparte's 
matest danger, yet the escape of the 
French ruler had occasioned a com* 
plete alteration in the Danish councils. 
It was only after the entire destruc- 
tion of the French army that formal 
overtures were made by Denmark ;— 
in the doubtful state of Europe, she 
might wish to keep well with both 
parties, and to unite at last with those 
who might prove.the stronger. Was 
the friendship of a power which had 
^one its utmost to support the common 

cause to be rdmquished for the sake 
of accommodating a government whost 
views were so equivocal ? 

One question renKnns— -Did the Swe* 
dish government shew a disposition to 
perform the treaty ? Never was- theft 
an instance of more complete and zeal- 
ous exertbn than that of Sweden.—- 
Her troops were dispatched to the 
very point where they could act with 
the greatest effect. As to the comptn^ 
sation given for her exertions, it may 
be remarked, that the measureof ceding 
a West India idand to that yyvnt was 
not new ; amd never was there a case 
in which it was less detrimental to Eng- 
land to make such a cession, than on 
the present occasion. In return for thii 
boon, a depot for British commerce 
was opened in Sweden ; and it may be 
asked whether such an effectual de- 
parture from the continenUl system 
was not an advantage to be pur- 
chased, even at a considerable price i 
-—It was the duty of this- oountryy 
above all others safe and prosperous, 
to set the example of generosity ; and 
it would have been madness in her to 
treat in the same manner the friends 
and the enemies of France. Those who 
take the field nnist be paid by others 
in whose cause they fight. This is but 
common justice ; and the principle 
fully warranted die pecuniary aid of 
100,0001. a month, which, by the trea- 
ty. Great Britain engaged to bestow 
upon Sweden.— The wise policy, in«- 
deed, which dictated this alliance, waa 
signally manifested in the course oJF the 

Early in the month of May, the 
Crown Prince of Sweden visited Stock- 
holm, and reviewed the troops assem- 
bled for embarkation. When they 
Were embarked, he proceeded toX^arls- 
crona, and on the 14th of May, de- 
parted for Stralsund. Before leaving 
Carlscrona, he addressed the Swedish 
army in the interior^ and announced 
the objects of the war.—" The king,** 

Digitized by 



said he» << in directing me to take the 
command of his army in Pomerania^ 
has charged me to leave in Sweden two 
corps of the army, sufficiently nume- 
rous to ensure the safety of the fron* 
tiers of the kingdom, and to act offen- 
sively wherever the honour and inte* 
orests of the countrj require. In se- 
parating from you tor some time, it is 
not to. disturb the repose of nations^ 
but to co-operate in the great work of a 
general peace, for which sovereigns and 
nations nave sighed for so many years. 
A new career of glory, and sources of 
prosperity, are opening to our country. 
Treaties founded upon sound policy, 
and which have the tranquillity of the 
north for their object, guarantee the 
imion of the people of Scandinavia.— 
Xiet us make ourselves worthy of the 
.splendid destiny which is promised us ; 
said let not the people who stretch out 
their arms to us have cause to repent 
their confidence.— Our ancestors dis- 
tinguished themselves by their bold, 
danng, and steady courage. Let us 
unite to these warlike virtues the en- 
thusiasm of military honour, and God 
will protect our arms." 

On the 18th of May, Bemadotte 
arrived at Stralsund to take the com- 
mand of the army. A Swedish force 
of 5000 men had been stationed near 
Hamburgh for the protection of that 
city* On the Slst of May, it was 
directed by the Crown Prince to fall 
back ; and the commanding officer 
was ordered to repair to Stralsund, to 
be brought before a court^pnartiali for 
having made an application of his 
^ troops which had never entered into 
the plans of the Swedish government. 
The Swedish army, in consequence of 
this order, retired, although Count 
Wabnoden made the most pressing re- 
presentsuion to induce them to remain. 
To explain this resolution, which ex- 
cited suspicions at the tkne, it is ne- 
cessary to state some particulars. 
To induce Sweden to take an active 

part in the operations on the continent* 
Russia and Prussia had engaged to 
place at her disposal an army of 50,000 
men. The corps which was organizing 
in the north of Germany, under the 
protection, and at the expence of £ng- 
land, vras, together with these Rus- 
sian and Prussian troops, to be placed 
under the command of the Crown 
Prince. Bemadotte was thus to have 
an army of 90,000 men, including his 
Swedisn troops. The Swedes to be 
brought into co-operation with the al- 
lies m Germany were not to exceed 
30,000 ; and of these a proportion ne- 
cessarily remained at Stralsund, where 
an entrenched camp was preparing for 
15,000 men. — But a part ot the Swe- 
dish force had not at this time arrived, 
and Bemadotte had not received the 
expected reinforcements of Russians 
and Prussians. He could have detach- 
ed only a small force, therefore, to the 
Elbe, which, being exposed to the 
joint attacks of the French and Danes, 
might have been entirely cut oflP. At 
this period the main armies of the al- 
lies were retiring from the Saale and 
the Elbe ; and as the whole course of 
the Lower Elbe, from Magdeburgb 
to Hamburgh, was but partially guard- 
ed by small detachments, the river 
mi^ht have been easily crossed at any 
point by a superior French force.— 
3j attempting to defend Hamburgh 
under these circumstances, the Crown 
Prince must have risked the destruc- 
tion of his army in detail, as all sup- 
port from his allies was remote and un- 

The importance of preserving Ham- 
burgh on principles of humanity, as 
well as of general policy, must have 
been obvious to Bemadotte ; and he 
must have been dissuaded from attempt- 
ing it on military considerations alone. 
Every military man would object to a 
plan by which a corps of troops should 
be thrown into a large town, unforti- 
fieJ, and placed in a cul desac, of which 

Digitized by 


Ghap« H'] 



the chief protectioiif a nveVf had been 
destroyed by the appearance of a new 
cDemy who commanded the right bank. 
It would appear also, that at this pe- 
riod the Crown Prince was left in the 
duk as to the views of the Russians 
and Prussians. He had already been 
disappointed of their promised sup- 
port ; wldk their inadequate exertions, 
their retrograde movements, and the 
experience of their conduct in former 
Contests, gave him reason to appre- 

hend that an armistice, and afterwards 
a peace, might be concluded without 
his concurrence or approbation. In 
such circumstances, he coul4 not have 
been justified in committing, beyond 
the reach of support, or the power of 
retreat, the disposable military force 
of Sweden, or in risking the destruc- 
tion of the whole, or a part of his army, 
when its only security might have de- 
pended on its being kept together in a 
formidable body at Stralsund. 

Digitized by 





An ArmMce concluded by the Intervention of Austria. — ProjMobfor a Con'^ 
greu. — The Armistice denounced, and Austriajoins the Allies. ^MwemetUs 

of the Armies Successes ofBlucher and of the Crown Prince. — Repulse of 

an Attack on Dresden. 

The Emperor of Austria hadf dn« 
rine the Russian campai^, takei\ but 
a rductant part on the side of Francct 
and after witnessing the disasters which 
befel that power» he gradually with- 
drew his troops into a neutral position. 
The Austrian cabinet^ howeTer» took 
a deep interest in the passing events ; 
nor was it a timid or inactive neutrality 
which this court was prepared to main- 
tain* Armaments of unexampled mag- 
nitude were completed in every part of 
the Austrian territories ; troops were 
poured into Bohemia, and placed in an 
attitude of observation. It appeared 
probable that the scale into which 
this power might throw herself would 
at once preponderate ; and to court 
her favour became the grand object of 
the belligerents. — Buonaparte, before 
leaving iuresdeD, published a bulletin, 
announcing that he had acceded to a 
proposition made by Austria for as- 
sembling a congress at Prague. Aus- 
tria afterwards declared that no such 
proposition had been made to her; 
and an assertion thus unauthorised ap- 
peared singular and offensive. This 
power, however, was not unwilling to 
interpose \ and as she viewed with un« 

easmess the progress of the French 
arms, and saw her frontiers in danger 
of being again encircled by them, the 
determined to take an active i>art in 

?utting a stop to further hostilities. 
Tnder her mediation an armistice was 
accordingly concluded ; hostilities be- 
tween the contending armies ceased on 
the 1st of June, and the armistice was 
signed and ratified on the 4th. By 
the terms of this convention the fine oi 
demarcation for both armies took its 
departure from the frontiers of Bohe- 
mia ; that of the allies passing through 
Landshut to the Boberr-^allowing 
that river to Ruderstadt, and towards 
Bolkenhiem and Strie^u,^pursuing 
the course of the Stneganerwefar to 
Canth, and extending to the Oder 
through Olfaschin and Althof. The 
line of the French army, on quittmg the 
Bohemian frontier, stretclwd to Alt 
Ramhitz and the Bober, as fisr as the 
townofLahn; thence it traversed the 
territory between the Bober and the 
Katzbach to the Oder. BresUiu was be- 
tween the two armies, and was declared 
neutral \ it was not to be occupied by 
any troops, not even by the Landsturm. 
—Such was the line of demarcation 

Digitized by 


CaAP. 15.] 



between the two rasm armieB. The 

line which •eparated the detached 

corps was continued from the mouth 

of the Katzbach along the Oder to 

the frontiers of Saxony and Prussia^ 

where it joined the Elbe. The French 

: of course to occupy Hamburgh^ 

of the articles stating << that tney 

"e in possession of the isles in the 

S&e, and every thing tchich ikey OC" 

aapied in the S2d mihtary diyision on 

the 8th of June at midnight." The be* 

sie^red and blockaded fortresses were 

to be rerictualled every five days* By 

the 10th article it was stipulated, that 

on the l2th of June, all the corps of 

tlie combtaed army beyond the Elbe, 

or in Saxony, were to return into 

PnMsia. Buonaparte was thus left un« 

AqpQted naster of the mouths of the 

£&e and the Weser. The daration 

erf* the armistice was fixed to the 20th 

of July indusiYe* It was agreed that 

fiaL days notice should be given of the 

fcamnption of hostilities. 

Preparations on an extensive scale 
were^ in the mean time, carried on 
throoffhout all the provinces of the 
Prussian monarchy, as well as the dis« 
tiicts of northern (Germany, which had 
been liberated from French inflnence. 
Hie events of the recent campaiflrn af- 
forded on this subject a most sanitary 
and important lesson. Every private 
object gave f^lace for the moment to 
the grand views of national safety. 
Levies for the augmentation of the re- 
gdar army vrere made to a verr great 
extent* A numerous and weU-disci- 
pKned militia, called Landwehr, was 
also raised; to which was added a 
levy eis ifiossr, under the apptUation of 

Austria was scarcely less indefatiga- 
ble in completing her establishment^-^ 
m raising new levies — and in pouring 
mraieroue corps into Bohemia. From 
the moment that the Russian arms ac- 
qvired the ascendancy, an extraordi- 
nary impulse was giv^n to the coun- 

cils of this power. All the men of 
influence began to exclaim, that now 
was the time to retrieve at once so 
many losses, which had reduced Aus- 
tria to a state of degradation. Rus« 
sia offered, now that she had delivered 
herself, to assist in the liberation d 
other nations ; and from all the neigh- 
bouring states ample co -operation 
might l)e with certainty expected.-— 
Austria, however, after such a succes-* 
sion of disasters, and so many disi^ 
pointments, shrunk from taking at once 
any decided step. She even employed 
a connderable share of dissimulation to 
conceal from the French the change 
which had taken place in her coundik* 

Buonaparte lavished offers, entrea* 
ties, protestations ; half of the Prus- 
sian monarchy was to be the reward 
xyf the co-operation of Austria, which 
would restore to him all his former as- 
cendancy. Austria turned a deaf ear 
to such proposals ; she recalled the 
auxiliary corps which had acted with 
the French army, and remained a mere 
spectator of the campaign in Saxony 
and Silesia. She had, however, alrea- 
dy gone too far to render it safe for 
her that France shoidd resume its 
former power, and again surround her 
territories with its armies. Such viewa 
of policy rendered her active in ne^o- 
dating an armistice, and in forwarding 
the assemblage of a congress at Prague. 
They determined her also to support 
no terms of peace, vriiich should not 
have for their basis the limitation of 
the French inftuence in Germany. The 
precise character of tl^ overtures first 
made by her has not been ascertained ^ 
but it is certain that from the moment 
they reached the ear of Buonaparte* 
he accounted her his enemy, and de* 
termined again to try the fate of 

Efforts were made accordingly by 
the French ruler to draw reimorce* 
meats from every quarter. Some corps 
of the army of Spatn^ which had ni* 

Digitized by 



therto been left untouched, began their 
inarch for the Elbe. Eugene Beau* 
kamois repaired to Italy, and assem- 
bled an army upon the Adige, with 
the view of overawing Austria on 
that side. Buonaparte, at the same 
time, interposed every species of delay 
in the negociation, by complaints rela- 
tive to tl^ character of the persons sent 
to the congress, and by disputes upon 
matters of form. His object, which he 
scarcely hesitated to avow, wa», that 
hostilities should be renewed during 
the continuance of the negociations. 
Thus he probably hoped to deceive 
Austria, and prevent her from imme- 
diately taking an active part in the 
war ; and if he should succeed in dri- 
ving the armies of Russia and Prussia 
beyond the Vistula, and cutting them 
on from all commum'cation with the 
Bohemian frontier, he might then 
give the law to all his enemies. Aus- 
tria, however, had formed her resolu- 
lion, and had fully determined, if the 
war should be renewed, to take the 
most decided part in it. At the ex- 
piration of the armistice, she propo- 
sed an extension of it for three weelcs, 
to which Buonaparte reluctantly ac- 
ceded. His views evidently were of 
such a character as to remove all pros- 
pects of a pacific termination to the 
discussions ; and Austria had, perhaps, 
no other object in this delay than to 
mature her preparations, and arrange 
the plan of the approaching campaign. 
Buonaparte still continued to raise £f- 
ficultits ; and as there appeared to be 
no prospect of his acceding to reason- 
able terms, the armistice was denoun- 
ced, and Austria issued her declara- 
tion of war. This event, which will be 
ever memorable in the annals of Eu- 
rope, and which of itself involved the 
complete re-establishment of the long* 
lost balance of power, occurred on the 
10th ^f August, 1813. 
. Before entering on hostilities, th« 
cabinet of Vienna issued a nutnifestD 

explaining its principles and BoUcy* 
This paper began by dedaribg his im- 
perial majesty's love of peace, and by 
assurinfir the world that he in» free 
from all thoughts of conquest and i^ 
grandiseraeot, and had entered upon 
war only to avert the danger to which 
the social system was exposed of be- 
coming a prey to a lawless and ambi- 
tious power. The emperor complain- 
ed of the destructive .system adopted 
by the enemy, by which commercial 
intercourse, and, indeed, almost all in* 
tercourse, was suspended between na- 
tions.— The manifesto touched ilpoir 
the marriage of the Austrian princes* 
to Buonajparte,— a marria^ consented 
to with the hope of inclimng him to a 
sense of moderation and justice a 
hope in which his majesty was the more 
justified, because when this union waa 
accomplished, Buotuiparte had reached 
that point of his career, when the desire 
of presenring his conquests seemed to 
be more natural than a restless vtmggle 
to acc^uire new possessions. If these 
flattermg prospects were destroyed, the 
misfortune was not to be imputed to 
Austria. — ^The year 1810 was not yet 
closed, when, in an evil hour, Buona- 
parte resolved to seize a large portion 
of North Germany, and to rob the free 
cities of Hamburgh, Bremen, and L.U- 
beck, first of theur political, and then 
of their commercial existence. This 
scheme was adopted, upon the arbitrary 
pretext, that the war with En^and re* 
quired it ; and seemed to be the fore- 
runner of greater usurpations, by which 
one half of Gennany was to become a 
French province, and Buonaparte the 
absolute ruler of the continent. — Al* 
luding to the war against Russia, and 
the motives which determined the po- 
licy of Austria in that war, it was re- 
marked in the manifesto, that— ^* The 
campaign of 1812 furnished a bmbo- 
rable example of the failure of a» on* 
dertaking supported by grigantic pow^ 
cr, conducted by a captain of the first 

Digitized by 


Chap. 15.] 



nnky when» in the confidence of great 
military talentSy he despises the rules 
of prudence, and o'ersteps the bounds 
of nature." Then was brought on an 
important revolution in all the politic 
cal relations of Europe. The confede- 
racy of Great Britain, Russia, and 
Sweden, presented a point of union to 
all neiehbounng states. Prussia seized 
that favourable moment, and threw 
herself into the arms of the allies. The 
hatred of foreign dominion burst forth 
on all sides. The crisis was not ne- 

flected by the Emperor of Austria, 
n the beginning of December, steps 
had been taken to dispose Buonaparte 
to a quiet and peaceful policy. But a 
striking constrast was soon observed 
between the sentiments of Austria and 
the conduct of Napoleon. He decla* 
red, he would hear of no proposition 
lor peace that should violate the 
French empire in the French sense of 
the word. At the same time eventual 
conditions, with which this self-created 
boundary did not seem to have any re* 
lation, were spoken of at one time with 
m e naci n g indignation, at another with 
bitter contempt, as if it had not been 
possible to declare in terms sufficiently 
distinct the resolution of Buonaparte, 
wd to make to the repose of the tioorld 
even one single nominal sacrifice. 

These hostile demonstrations were 
attended with this particular mortifi- 
cation to Austria, that they placed 
even the invitations to peace, which 
this cabinet, with the knowledge and 
apparent consent of France, made to 
other courts, in a false and disadvanta- 
geous light. The sovereigns united 
against France, instead of giving any 
answer to the propositions of Austria, 
lor negociation and mediation, laid be- 
fore her the public declarations of the 
French ruler. And when, in March, 
his majesty sent a minister to London, 
to invite England to share in a negocia- 
tion, the British ministry replied, they 
fottld not believe that Austria still en- 

tertained hopes of peace, when Boo* 
naparte had, m the mean time, expressed 
sentiments which could tend only to 
perpetuate war. 

In the month of April, Buona- 
parte suggested the dissolution of ^ 
Prussian monarchy as the natural coa* 
sequence of a defection from Francef 
and observed, that it depended upon 
Austria herself to- add the most im- 
portant and flourishing of the Prut- 
sian provinces to her own states. Aus- 
tria, however, felt that the restoration 
of the Prussian monarchy was the first 
step to be taken. 

With reference to the assertion of 
Buonaparte, that he had proposed a 
congress to be held at Prague, the 
Austrian cabinet declared, that it was 
only acquainted with this proposal 
through the public prints. Aware of 
all the obstacles to a general peace, 
Austria had long considered the possi- 
bility of obtaining the object progres- 
sively, and first by a continental peaces 
-*not that the Emperor of Austria, 
<< imagined that the continent could 
exist, if the separation of England 
were not considered as a most deadlv* 
evil.'' Towards the close of the montn 
of June, the Austrian cabinet (said 
the manifesto,) sent a minister to 
Dresden, and a convention was con-^* 
eluded, accepting the mediation of 
Austria in tne negociation of a ge« 
neral peace ; if that could not be ef- 
fected, of a preliminary continental 
peace. The congress was to be opened 
on the 5th July ; and the armistice was 
afterwards extended to the 10th, Au- 
gust. In the mean time Austria resol- 
ved once more to try the British go- 
vemment* Buonaparte leceived the 
proposal with apparent approbation, 
and offered a passage to the Austrian 
messenger through France. Bat dif- 
ficulties arose^ the passports were de- 
layed from time to time, and at last 
refused* During the interval, the Rus- 
sian and Prussian plenipotenttarict were 

Digitized by 



namedy and aitived at Prague. The 
negociations were not to be protracted 
beyond the 10th August, unless they 
afforded a confident hope of a faTour- 
able resuk. But it was soon evident 
that France procrastinated ; a French 
minister arrived, but had no orders to 
proceed to business until the appear- 
ance of a plenipotentiary, who did not 
join the congress until the 28th of Ju* 
ly. Formu and minute discussions 
rendered all the endeavours of the me- 
diating power abortive. The powers 
. of the French negociator were unne- 
cessarily circumscribed ; and it was 
not till the 6th of Au^st that he gave 
in a new declaration, by which the ne- 
gociation was not brought one step 
nearer to a close* After an useless 
exchange of notes, the 1 0th of August 
arrived — the congress was at an end, 
and Austria had no remedy, no re- 
source, but to take up arms.-— Such 
was the substance of this important 

The French army, at the close of 
this discussion, equalled perhaps in 
numerical amount those of all the 
other powers united. At no former 
period, probabbr, had Buonaparte been 
at the head of one more numerous. 
The main body, under his own imme- 
diate command, may be estimated 
without exaggeration at 300,000 men. 
He had established a strong fortified 
Knc to the Bohemian frontier, begin- 
ning at Wittenberg and passing through 
Torgau and Dresden to Konigatein 
and the entrenched camp at Pima — * 
a fine military line, no doubt, to resist 
an army advancing against him from 
the Silesian frontier. Between this 
Mne and the Silesian frontier his main 
army was stationed ; in Upper and 
Lower Lnsatia, Mortier was posted 
with 70,000 men, including a large 
force of cavalry at Luckaw ; and Ney, 
with about the same numbers, occupied 
Bautzen. The Saxons were at Goer- 
litz. On the Maine there was an army 

of reserve under Augereau; andanar* 
my of Bavarians, about 25,000 stron^^ 
was stationed near Munich. A con- 
siderable force under Davoust defended 
Holstein aAd Hamburgh, and threat- 
ened Pomerania. The communication 
of this corps with the army at Dres- 
den, and the preponderance of the 
French on the middle Elbe, were im- 
perfectly suuntained by the garrison 
of Magdeburgh. 

The allies occupied a line of much 
greater extent. The accession of Ads- 
tria, besides making a lar^ addition to 
their force, brought with it also the 
advantage of turning the barrier of the 
Elbe, as that river flows for many 
miles through Bohemia, and might 
thus be passed by the allies without 
opposition. In Bohemia, therefore, 
the grand army took its position. It 
consisted of the whole Austrian force, 
augmented by large Russian and Prus* 
sian detachments from Silesia. The 
head-quarters were at Toplitz, whence 
the combined armies threatened Saxony 
and the rear of the French army. 
Blucher commanded a very large force 
in Silesia, consisting partly of Russian 
and Prussian regulars, and partly of 
a large body of well-organised militia, 
the whole amounting to about 100,000 
men. The Crown Prince of Sweden, 
who had his head-quarters at Berlin, 
commanded the army of the north of 
Germany. This force was composed 
of the whole Swedish army, of large 
corps of Russian and Prussian regulars, 
of the militia of Brandenburgh, and the 
troops levied in the Hanse Towns and 
other districts which had thrown off 
the French yoke. On one side, thia 
army observed Davoust and the gar- 
rison of Magdeburgh ; on the other it 
covered Berlin, and was prepared to 
act as circumstances might require 
against the French grand army. It 
was estimated at 120,000 men. 

This position of the allies does not, 
with a vi^w to military movements^ 

Digitized by 


Oba9. 15.] 



appear ei 
molt force 

Du». Their 
was divided into three 
corps, acting separately, at a distance 
from each other, and maintaining only 
a circuitous and imperfect communica- 
tion. The French army was in the 
centre, completely united, and ready to 
direct its entire force against any of 
the allied divisions. Such a position 
was very unfavourable for offensive 
movements, which yet were evidently 
contemplated. To have brou^^ht the 
whole mass of the allied armies into 
Bohemia, jwhence offensive operations 
could best be undertaken, would a^ 
pear to have been more eligible. Silesia 
and Brandenburgh might have been 
covered by small detached corps, quite 
adequate to such a purpose, since the 
French army, vnth so large a force 
behind it, could not have sent any 
considerable bodies of troops against 
them. Such appear, in a mihtary point 
of view, decidedly the best arrange- 
ments.— Othercircumstance8,ho wever, 
may have influenced the conduct of 
the allied chiefs. The force of the 
Prussian states, consisting in a great 
measure of militia, may have been un* 
wilHne to march into a remote and fo- 
reigrn district ; and may also, to render 
it dficient, have required the addition 
of regular troops. There may have 
been advantages in point of supply and 
subsistence ^so, in the arrangements 
which were actually adopted. — The al- 
lied eenerals understood and obviated 
the dis3ulvantages of their position* 
They were always careful, when the ene- 
my approached in superior force, to re- 
tire and watch the favourable moment 
for attack, when that force had with- 
drawn to another point. This plan, 
which depended for success upon accu- 
racy of information, was gpfeatly aided 
by their possessing in the cossacks the 
best light cavalry in the world ; and, 
by a happy combination of skill, cau- 
tion, and valour, they were enabled to 
prevent the difficulties under which 

they laboured, from affecting the final 
issue of the campaign. 

The crisis now approaching pror 
mised ^reat events. Military talents 
of the hij|rhest order were to be exertedy 
armies fonned on the most gpgantic 
scale were to be put in motion ; and 
operations, in comparison of which 
many of the most renowned battles 
which fill the pages of history were 
mere skirmishes, were about to be un* 
dertaken. Great Bntain, Russia, Prus- 
sia, Austria, Sweden, Portugal, and 
Spain, were ranged on the one side ; 
France, Holland, Denmark, ludy, Ba- 
varia, Saxony, and the other states of 
Germany, on the other ; and whether 
we reflect upon the vast tract of country 
over which the desolations of war were 
to sweep, the viride waste of human 
life,' or the vast issue at stake, — the 
prolongation of a system of oppression 
and violence which had fiUed all £u» 
rope with woes, or the emancijpatioii 
of millions of our fellow men from t 
rapacious and restless ambition, — no 
preceding period, since the political 
formation of modem Europe^ had 
borne interests so mighty, and occur- 
rences so pregnant with curses or 
blessings suspended in the uncertain 
balance of military fortune. The allies 
were strong in the justice of their 
cause. The right, it is true, does not 
always prosper; but violentaggression* 
by a law of Providence and nature, 
wnich tyrants have in vain endeavoured . 
to abolish, creates a power of re-actioa 
against itself, which seldom fails ulti- 
mately to over-power it. Buonaparte 
had already felt this without pronting 
by his experience. He had felt it in 
Spain ; he felt it in Russia | and the 
mighty preparations now organised 
against him, were but the effects of 
that re-action which his attempts upon 
the sovereigntj of the continent had 
provoked. U ever nations could ap- 
peal to the equitable decisions of that 
power which coutrols the universe, thq 

Digitized by 




allied nations could make that appeal. 
If the justice of a cause can inspire 
tigour uto the breasts of those who 
support it« then the allied armies must 
lia?e been roused by the force of this 
motive to deedsof the greatest heroism. 
And here it is proper to mention, 
that the cause of the allies was now 
to have the assistance of a man distin- 
guished as one of the greatest soldiers 
of modem times. General Moreau ha- 
ving acceded to the vrishes of the Em- 
peror Alexander, that he should give 
Ais aid on this great occasion, an ap- 
plication was made to the British ad- 
miral, Cockbum, for a licence to ena- 
ble an American ship to proceed to 
Europe. The licence was granted ; 
and on the 21st of June, Moreau em- 
barked and sailed from America. He 
landed at Gottenbursh on the 26th of 
July, and on the ^tn of August he 
anin embarked at Ystadt, in a Swe- 
dish briff of war, for Stralsund- The 
Prince Royal of Sweden, who was then 
at Berlin, set off to give his early friend 
a meeting, and to concert with him a 
plan of military operations. It was 
determined by these two experienced 
officers, that they should organize a 
separate corps cParmeef to be compo- 
sed of French prisoners, and called 
«« Moreau's Legion." This body was 
to be decorated with the white or na- 
tional cockade, to bear the motto pro 
pairiai to fight for the deliverance of 
JBurope, and in particular for the eman- 
cipatibn of Frenchmen. A part of the 
pten agreed upon was, that General 
Willot, who was expected from Ame- 
rica, and General Rewbel, (the com- 
mander in chief of the Westphalian 
army when the Duke of Brunswick 
escaped, and who was disgraced by 
Buonaparte on account of that event; 
should organize such of the French 
prisoners as they could raise in Enc^- 
land, and disembark with them in the 
north of France. The execution of 
this pkuiy however, from which IHi 

tie good, after all, could be expected, 
was soon interrupted by a melancholy 
event, which closed the career of the 
unfortunate Moreau. 

The first movements of any import- 
ance made by the French army after 
the denunciation of the armistice, were 
in the direction of Berlin, the head- 
ouarters of the Crown Prince of Swe- 
den. All the reports of the secret 
agents having announced, on the even- 
ing of the 2ist of Au^st, that the 
French were concentrating the corps 
of the Dukes of Reggio, Belluno, and 
Padua, and of Generals Bertrand and 
Regnier, amounting to more than 
80,000 men, in the environs of Ba- 
reuth, and every thing announcing, on 
the part of these troops, a rapid march 
upon Berlin ; the Crown Prince pla- 
ced two divisions of the third Russian 
corps, commanded by Bulow, between 
Kemersdorf and Klein Berin. One di- 
vision already occupied Mittenwalde^ 
and another Trebbin, in order to mask 
the whole movement. The fourth Rus- 
sian corps, under Taucntzen, united at 
Bkkentelde. The Swedish army left 
Potsdam on the 22d, proceeded upon 
Saarm, passed the defiles, and took 
post at Ruhlesdorf. The Russian corps 
followed the Swedish, and took post 
at Gutergatze. General Tchemicheff 
guarded Beletz, and TreunbrHzen, 
with 3000 cossacks and a brigade of 
light mfantry.— Affairs were in this 
state when tne enemy attacked Gene- 
ral Thumeu, at Trebbin, on the 22d in 
the morning. The superiority of the 
French determined the general to eva- 
cuate that post. The enemy advanced 
successively, and occupied the inter- 
val between MittenwaldeandtheSaarey 
covered by woods and ffanked by 
marshes. The advanced posts of the 
Crown Princess army fell back slow- 
ly, and covered the front of the line. 
On the 23d, in the morning, the 
corps of General Bertrand attacked 
General Tauenzero ; the latter rcpul- 

Digitized by 


Ghap. 15.] 



sed him, and made some prisoners. — 
The viUage of Gross Beren» against 
which t\^ 7th French corps and a 
atronrresenre was directed, was taken. 
7he Duke of Keggio's corps pro- 
ceeded upon Ahrendbrff. By the oc- 
cupation of Gross Beren, the enemy 
uras at the distance of 1000 tmes only 
from the centre of the camp of the 
combtoed army. General Bulow re- 
cexfed orders to atuck the village; 
he executed it with the decision of a 
skilful general. The cannonade was 
^rarm for some hours. The troops ad- 
vanced under the protection of the ar« 
tillery, and fell with the bayonet upon 
the 7th Frenchcorps, which had deploys 
ed in the plain, and which marched upon 
the camp. The Russian and Swedish 
sumies were also in battle, and waited 
the deploying of the other enemy's 
ccJlnmns, to attack them at the same 
time. General Winzengerode was at 
the head of 10,000 horse, and the 
Count de Woronzow at the head of 
the Russian infantry. Marshal Count 
Stedinck, in front of the Swedish line, 
had his caTalry in reserve. The village 
of Ruhelsdorn, situated in front of the 
Swedish camp, was furnished with in- 
fantry to keep open the communica- 
tion with General Bulow. The other 
corps of the enemy's army not having 
moved from the woods, the Russian 
army coidd not engage. The enemy, 
however, having menaced the villaflfe 
of Ruhelsdorff, and having already 
pushed his tirailleurs against the light 
Swedish troops placed m front of that 
village, theCrowR Prince ordered some 
battalions, supported by artillery, to 
reinforce the advanced posts, and to 
push on with a battalion of flying ar- 
tillery to take the enemy in flank ; in 
this movement they succeeded. The 
French, after having sustained a seveve 
loss, retired without attempting to 
hring on a general engagement, and 
fell back in &t direction of Dresden. 
While the aoAy of the north of Crtr- 

many was thus employed, General 
Blucher, who commanded the army of 
Silesia, advanced, passed the Bober, the 
boundary of JUusatia, and drove in all 
the French corps by which that river 
was defended. On the arrival, how- 
ever, of a great reinforcement, headed 
by Buonaparte himself, he immediate- 
ly measured back his steps. Buona- 
parte then crossed the Bober at Low- 
enberg, and pushed forward into Si- 
lesia. Blucher took up a strong posi- 
tion near Lignitz, on the ELatzbach, 
a river rendered famous by a signal 
victory gained by Frederick on its 
banks. Here he was attacked by Buo- 
naparte, and fought with his wpnted 
intrepidity. ' He made 18,000 prison- 
ers, including a general of division^ 
two brigadier-generals, and a number 
of colonels. He took also 103 pieces 
of cannon, 250 waggons, and two ea- 
gles. The enemy did not immedi- 
ately renew the combat, but retreated 
over the Bober and the Queiss, pur- 
sued by the allies. " Silesia is deliver- 
ed from the enemy,** said the old gc 
neral, «* let us prostrate ourselves be- 
fore the Lord of Hosts for the glori- 
ous victory he has gained us.*' • 

When General Blucher moved from 
Silesia upon Lusatia, threatening the 
enemy in front, Buonaparte conceived 
that he had discovered the grand plaa 
of the allies, and he inunediately re- 
paired in person to meet and repel their 
main attack. But Blucher's ordera 
were to avoid any general engagement, 
and retire before superior nunibers. — 
On learning, after the sharp conflict 
which has been described, that power- 
ful reinforcements were advancing to 
support the enemy, who prepared to 
renew the attack, Blucher withdrew 
without disorder behind the Katzbaclu 
Buonaj^arte thought he thus defeated 
the designs of the allies in Silesia. But 
their views were otherwise directed. 
The advance of Blucher veas intended 
to mask their movements in another 

Digitized by 


256 EDINBURGH ANNUAL REGISTER, 1813. [Chaf. 15. 

quarter ; and while the veteran gene- 
ral was making his 'supposed serions 
demonstrations on the Bober» they 
-were issuing in great force from the 

Masses of Bohemia. They advanced 
rom the frontiers on the 20th aijd 21st 
of August ; the Russian and Prussian 
armies, which formed their right wing, 
approached by the passes of Peters- 
wolde, leading to Pima ; the Austrians 
by the long deiatir from Commotau. 
This powerful mass moved upon Dres- 
den, An error occurred in the execution 
. of the movement, — the neglect to secure 
the pass at Gobehr. The right wing of 
the allies, however, got into action on 
the 22d, with St Cyr, at Zehista, near 
Pima. The French general was driven 
back, and retired into Konigstein, 
the entrenched camp at Liebenstein, 
and the works round Dresden. The 
^rand armies pressed forward, and on 
tne 26th, the people of Dresden saw 
them upon the neights above the city. 
The enemy retired to the protection of 
their works ; aad after a partial at- 
tack of the Russian and Prussian light 
troops upon the gardens, the whole al- 
lied armj moved to the assault at four 
in the aUemoon of the 27th. The ar- 
tillery, though broujrht up at the close 
of the evening to within one hundred 
paces of the w^l, could not make any 
practicable breaches ; and the allies re- 
tired at night to the heights which 
they had occupied in the moming. — 
On the 28th, Buonaparte issued from 
Dresden with 130,000 men. The bat- 
tle was chiefly confined to the cavalry 
and artillery ; the main bodies of the 
infantry of both armies did not come 
into contact. No impression could be 
made on the positions of the allies, and 
the action ceased. But as they appre- 
hended that Buonaparte might throw 
over a body of troops at Slonigstein 
and Pima, to seize the passes in the 
rear of their march, they retired from 
their position on the 28th in the even- 
ing, in perfect order, towards the Bo* 

hemian frontier. They had judged 
correctly. Buonaparte had made the 
movement which they anticipated^ 
but happily it produced only defeat 
and destruction to the troopa employ- 
ed in it. On two successive days the 
enemy were attacked, and at last put 
to a general route ; they threw down 
their arms, abandoned their guns and 
standards, and retreated in all direc- 
tions. Vandamme and six other ge* 
ncrals were taken. Sixty pieces of ar- 
tillery, six standards, and about 10,000 
prisoners, rewarded the exertioas of 
the allies —The fugitives were dotely 
pursued by the cossacks and light cm* 
valry of the combined armies. 

Such were the operations near Dres- 
den and on the Bohemian frontier.— >• 
General Blucher, in the mean tinie, ha- 
ving retired upon Janer, re-advanced 
on the 24th against Macdonald, who 
occupied a good position, which he 
had strencrthened with a numerous ar- 
tillery. He was, however, attacked 
by Blucher upon the morning of the 
S^6th, and after a sharp contest, dri- 
ven from every part of his position^ 
leavbg fifty pieces of artillery, thirty- 
nine tumbrils and ammunition wa^ 
gons, and more than ten thousand pri- 
soners. The contest was renewed with 
fresh viffour, and with equal succe8t» 
by Blucher on the 27th and 28th ; and 
the result was, that thirty pieces of 
cannon and five thousand prisonen 
were taken during these two days. 

Although no general battle had beeo 
fought, a succession of sangdoary 
combats thus followed each other, and 
the loss on both sides was consider- 
able. Several officers of distinction 
fell ; but the chief interest was excited 
by the fate of Moreau. In the battle 
of the 27tk, before Dresden, as he was 
on* horseback by the side of the Em- 
peror Alexander, a ball passing through 
the horse, carried off both his legs. This 
dreadful wound did not immediately 
prove mortaL His limbs were ampu- 

Digitized by 


Chaf. 15.] 



tated, and he was carried in a litter to 
Bohemia | but after lingering for a few 
da^ ke expired in mat agony. 

T*he pretence of Moreau in the al- 
lied army had excited much enthuti- 
asm throuffhoot Europe $ and a fate 
ao tn^pcu and untimely prodnced 
equal tympathy »id regret. Yet when 
we come to reflect upon his conduct, 
tbere may be room for a difference of 
opinioD. Unjust expulsion from the 
political community may seem to de- 
stroy the ties by which an individud 
is united to it» and to absolve him 
Brom the duties of allegiance. When 
this injustice is exercised by a state 
^rainst one to whom it has been great- 
ly indebted, the trial to bditiduSi for- 
titude becomes the more severe. Yet 
the general sense of mankind seems to 
pronounce that there is something in- 
deliUe in the relations between men 
and the country which gave them 
birth, and that no wrong, no suffer- 
ing, can ever e£Bice thrai. Moreau 
professed, indeed, ^and ip this he was 
saaetioned by the oedarations of the 
allies ) to ouJte war, not against France, 
but against the usurper who ruled ic 
Had the object been to change the 
govemment, to restore either a free 
constitution or the ancient monarchy, 
Moreau naight have had a fair ground 
of justification. But the allies dis- 
damied any such intention ; they pro- 
fessed no other object but to re<esU- 
blish against France the ancient ba- 
lance of power, and to level her pre- 
•ent overwhelining preponderance in 
the system of Europe. They were 
not thus, perhaps, doing her any rad 
injury, since extended conquest does 
by no means constitute the real hap- 
pmess of nations. Yet it is not viewed 
a this light br mankind in general ; 
and in the mind of a great commander 
it cui scarcely be doubted, that with 
military successes thegrandeurand pro- 
sperity of his country will be in a ffreat 
degree identified. The coaduct of Mo* 


reau, therefore, can scarcely be vindica- 
ted by the feelings of patriotism ; it can 
be defended onqr upon the principles 
of universal philanthropy. Such prin^ 
ctples, however, from their vague and 
flexible nature, ought to be viewed 
arith extreme suspicion, particularly 
when they point to some object which 
maj afford gratification to private am- 
bition or resentment. There is one 
circumstance in the case of Moreau 
which, if not explained, appears ex- 
tremely suspicious. He came only to 
bask in the sunshine of that fortune 
which had attended the allied arms ; 
for so long as the cause of Europe 
languished he had taken no part in it. 
He was not found in Spain, where the 
most just of causes was to be defend- 
ed ; not even in Russia, when that 
country was invaded, and in danger of 
being over-run. He came not till a 
succession of victories, and the forma- 
tion of a grand confederacy, had ren- 
dered the triumph of the allied cause 
almost certain. All this mav admit of 
explanation ; he may not have been 
invited; a proper opening may not 
have been offered to his exertions. 
-But some such expbnation seems ne- 
cessary to account for the inactivity of 
his philanthropic principles, till the 
moment when their exertion was less 
necessary and less meritorious. But 
whatever opinion may be formed upon 
this subject, there cannot be the slight- 
est doubt that the allied sovereigns 
were fully justified in availing them- 
selves of the acknowledged talents of 
this commander, for the promotion of 
their own just cause. A very absurd 
opinion, however, was almost universal 
tat the time,F— that the success of that 
cause depended chiefly upon Moreau, 
and that Buonaparte could only be 
opposed by commanders trained in the 
same school with himself. Such aa 
idea is totally inconsistent, not only 
-with subsequent events which could 
not be then taken into account, but 

Digitized by 



even with tbe occurreoeea of the pre> 
€edin?campaign* Buonaparte had bera 
humbledy and the finest zarmj he ever 
commanded had been annihilatedt witli- 
out any aid from France ; and there 
could be no reason to 8uppo8e» that 
•with similar meant nmilar successes 
might not continue to crown the arms 
of the allies. The obIj- operation at 
which Moreau assisted, and which, if 
iK>t planned by him, received his sanc- 
tion, was the attack upon Dxesden ; 
an operation which does not reftect 
much credit on those with whom it 

The north of Germany, where the 
Crown Prince commandea, became the 
theatre of erents of great importance. 
After the retreat of the French from 
Berlin, the Swedish and Prussian ar- 
my pressed close upon them, and eain- 
ed several partial advantages ; and the 
Crown Pnnce finding that he vn» not 
opposed bv an equalforce, determined 
to take advantage of his siqieriority. 
He moved towards Rosslau, mtendi&g 
tocrossthe Elbe, andmarehupon Leip- 
zig. He took with him the Swedidi 
and Russian troops, while Geaoral 
Tauentzein was left with 40/XK) Prus- 
sians at Juterbock, for the purpose of 
covering Berlin. The allies having fe- 
tired finom before Dresden, Marshal 
Ney returned to his army,«-bi«aglit 
with him the divisions whidi had been 
withdrawn from it, and, observing the 
two coTDs of the Crown Prince's armjr 
detached from each other, he concei- 
ved the design of attacldng them ae^ 
parately* That part of the Trench ar- 
my, therefore, which had been brought 
to the left bank of the Elbe to oppose 
the enterprizes of the Crown Prince, 
suddenly re-passed the river at Witten- 
berg, and marched towards Juteibock, 
where Tauentzein was posted. The 
Crown Prince set out on the 6th of 
September, at three o'clock in the 
morning, from Rabenstein, and collect^ 
ed the Swedish and Russian armiet 

upon the heights of LobeMoo. He 
was vraiting the reports of General 
Tauentzeia, when he received an ac- 
^uat fronaGeneialBuliow, asAOuncinflr 
that the whole French annywasiafufi 
mjb-ch upof Juterbock* The Crowi 
Prince ordered Bulosr to attadt ioa- 
mediately the fank and rear of the ene- 
myy befoiie General Tauenta»in, who 
defended the approadieft of the town^ 
should bei overwhtlased by nuoubcrs. 
The Swedish amy,, whidi had march- 
ed upwards of two O^maa mHes^ ^pco- 
oeeded towards Juterbock, whidi wan 
yet at a considmble distance ; it was 
followed by the RiusiaBi arasy , vnth the 

the orders of the Coant A^oroasoff, 
and the corps of General Tchcmidieff» 
whidi continued before Wittenberg* 
The cannonade b^^aa iasmediatdy bf* 
tween the Pnissian troons and tbe 
army of the enemy. Ijie Russian 
and Swedish coips, after Ukot forced 
marches, were obliged to^ hak for a 
momoit in order to forar ia order of 
battle. The Prussian arm j, aaBoaat- 
ing to 40»000 men» sastaned in the 
mean time, vrith a coarage truly he- 
roic, the repeated eSbvts of TC^OOa of 
the enemy, supported by 200 piecaa of 
cannon* The struggle was uaequid 
aad murderous* Tl^ Prussian troops, 
however, were not diaconcerted; and 
if sooM battaUons were obKged to 
yidd die ground which they had gain- 
ed, they £d> not fail, to je-occupy it 
die nseaient aften While these evwata 
Qccuned, 70 battalfona of Russiaaa 
aad Swedes, 10,000 horse of both aa- 
tions^ and 150 pieces of vtillery, 
advanced in cdumos of attack* 1»- 
ving intermediate qjMces for dcpk>yin«. 
Four thousand Russian and Swednih 
cavalry advanced at full ^peed to sup- 
port some points on which the ene- 
my principally directed his att a cks , 
Their appearance checked him, and 
the arrival of the columns completed 
his confunoa. The fate of the batde 

Digitized by 


CsAt. 15.] 



was instantly <leeided. The enemy 
sounded a retreat ; the cavalry charged 
liiin with a baldness resembling fury, 
md carried disorder into his colunmsy 
wlucli retreated with mat precipita* 
tion upon die route of Gahna. The 
French force was composed of four 
carps tParmSCf those of the Duke of 
Reggioi— of Generals Bertrand and 
Remier,-^ the Duke of Padua, and 
of trom three to four thousand Polish 
troops; die whole linder the command 
of Marshal Ncy.— The result of this 
battle^ which was fought neai" the vil- 
fa^ of DenneritZy was in the first in« 
sumce 5000 prisoners, three standards, 
from S5 to SO pieces of cannon^ and 
upwards of 900 ammunition waggons* 
The ield of battle, and the roads OTer 
wfaidi the enemy passed, were cotered 
widi dead and wounded, and with the 
arms whkh had been abandoned. Vi- 
gonrady pursued, the enemy, who en- 
deawmnd to retnre towards Tofgau, 
did not reach the Elbe before he suf* 
fered losses yet more considerable.o-*« 
Geoerat Wobeser, who had been or- 
dered t0 proceed with 5000 men from 
Ludoui upon Gahna, attacked the 
Fiendi in diat town, where- the Prince 
of Modcwa, and the Dukes of Reggia 
aad of Fsdua, had taken up their quar- 
ten with part of the defeated army, 
»d made 2500 prisoners. The half of 
Marshal Ney's escort was Idlled. The 
bit of the Prussian troops was also 
great, add amounted to between 4 and 
50OO men killed and wounded. <«The 
result of the battle, howeiier,'* said 
die Crown Prince, *• ought to contri- 
bute to the consolation of every true 
patriot, who wffl find the triumph of 
die csose of his country insured by the 
death of these brave men." The loss 
of the flSwecfish and Russian troops was 
not grieat. «» The different corps,*' 
added the Crown Prince, ** vied with 
each odier in courage and devotion. 
The heroic conduct shewn on this oc* 
casion by the Prussian army, is calcu* 

lated to exist for ever in the annals of 
mifitary iame, and to inspire all those 
who fight for the independence of Ger- 
many. The Russian and Swedisk 
troops, who took part in the engage- 
ment, valiantly seconded the efforts of 
their 'brethren in anus. General Bu- 
low displayed the coolness and bravery 
of a warrior, who had no other object 
than the ^ory of his king and the de- 
fience of his country. The officers un<* 
der his comnoand imitated his honour* 
able example. The Prince of Hesse 
Homberg distinguished himseffin die 
most brilliant manner. General the 
Count de Tauentzein gave proofs of 
his talents and san^2^x»dl During the 
whole affidr, he sustained most vigor- 
ous and repeated attacks of the ene- 
my, and was of mat assistance to- 
wards the successfiu result of the strug- 
gle, by the boldness he discovered; 
and by the adimrable choice of his po<« 
sifion."— -Every day brought fresh 
proofs that die consequences of th^ 
batde of Dennentz were greater than 
was at first expected. The nght troop^ 
did not desist from following the 
French, and taking prisdners^ ammu- 
nition waggons, and oiggage. 

The Silesian army, under Blucher, 
was not less successful. T%is distin* 
guisbed general paused not a moment 
after the victory over Macdonald which 
has already been mentioned,-~he our- 
sued theenemy, and again attacked him 
on the Sober. He gainedanother victo- 
ry still more compfete than the former. 
The heavy rains and the overflowing 
erf the rivers cut off all retreat. One 
^vision of French, which fought with 
its rear to' the Bober, was entirely cap- 
tured, and most of the others were de- 
stroyed. The wreck of Macdonald'a 
army fled through Lusatia. Blucher 
successively crossed the Bober, the 
Reiss, and the Queiss, and arrived al- 
most at the gates of Dresden. 

Nor was the grand army of Bohemia 
inactive during these important opera- 

Digitized by 


§60 EDINBURGH ANNUAL REGISTER, 1818. [Chap. 15. 

tions. It re-adyanced on the 5th of 
September towards DresdeD,— drove 
the enemy almost under the walls of 
the city» and occupied Dohna and Pir- 
na. On the Sth, Buonaparte left Dres- 
deny^attacked General Wittgenstein 
at Dohna, with a very superior force* 
and compelled the Russians to fall 
back to Peterswalde. General Zie- 
then's corps, which was attacked at 
Pima, retired next day, and took poat 
in the mountains on the Bohemian 
frontier* Buonaparte continued his ad- 
vance till the 12th, when he reached 
Nollendorff, and advanced towardt 
Culm. The allies, meanwhile, called 
in the troops which had been sent to 
Chemnitz and Freiberg on the left, 
and to Aussig and Leitmeritz on the 
right ; and on the l^th> having col« 
lected 100,000 men and 800 pieces of 
cannon, they offered battle to the ene- 
my, which, however, was declined.— 
Buonaparte then began his retreat, 
breaking up the roads towards Dres- 
den in every direction^— a circumstance 
vrhich rendered it impossible to pursue 
him with advantage. 
, , The ardent desire of Buonaparte to 
annihilate the combined army of the 
north of Gf^rmany, occasioned him the 
loss of much time and many men, in 
marches and counter-marches. To sup- 
port the operations of Marshal Ney, 
he sent the corps of the Duke of Ra- 

fuaa to Hoyerswerda on the 7th of 
eptember. This corps, about 25,000 
strong, had orders to proceed to Ber- 
lin, and there effect a junction with 
Ney. A strong detachment was at the 
same time sent upon the right flank of 
General Blucher, to force him to re- 
treat — The Duke of Ragusa arrived 
early on the 8th at Ho>erswerda ; but 
on receiving intelligence of the battle 
of Deiinevitz he hastily retreated, and 
inarched by way of Konigsberg to 
Dresden. In the retreat oT the 8th, 
be was attacked at Hoyerswerda by 
die detachment of Colonel Fignier of 

the Russian gruards. The colonel^ mt 
the head of 800 horse, pursued him to 
Konigsberg, killed many men be* 
longing to his rear, and took 1000 pri- 
soners. Continuing without intermia- 
aion the pursuit of the enemy's rear» 
this o£Bcer fell in with the hsL^gtm^ 
took the mater part of it, kiUed a 
great number of men, and carried %S 
with him 400 draught horses. Turn- 
ing upon this towards Grotteohayo^ 
he put to the rout two squadrons of 
the enemy. — Some spies, whom this 
officer had sent to Dresden, assured 
him on their return that the city was 
at this t^ne provided with bo more 
than a fortnight's necessaries for the 
army, and that nothing was left for 
the inhabitants. The Saxon court9 for* 
merly so tranquil, thus saw its capital 
exposed to all the horrors of a sie|^ 
The kin? himself was a wretched wit- 
ness of the calamities which oppressed 
his ]>eople, without the posdbility of 
alleviating them, — without any other 
prospect than that of sedog them still 
further aggravated. The Saxon na- 
tion was sensible of its own and its so« 
vereign's de^dation ; it was desirous 
of resuming its rank amon^ independ- 
ent states ; a patriotic spirit was al- 
ready manifested ; but it was restrains 
ed by circumstances from aiding effec- 
tually the great cause of Europe. A 
Saxon legion, however, was h>miing^ 
at the same time with that of Baden ; 
and the Germans demonstrated that 
they were not unworthy of their fathers* 
It vras expected that in a short time 
all the nations from the coast of the 
Baltic to the right bank of the Rhine* 
would rise in a mass to drive back the 
oppressors of the continoit to the left 
bank of that river. Fear could not de- 
ter them much longer,"-fbr 400»000 
victorious warriors were ready at all 
points to support and assist tMra. 

While events so unfavourable to the 
French army took place around Dres- 
den, in Silesiay and in the north of 

Digitized by 


Chap. 1&] 



Germaoyy thdr litiation on the «fe- 
coodary theatre of war, on the Lower 
Slbct was leu ditadTanta|[eout. At 
tlie breakine out of hottilitiety Da- 
^rooat marc&d from Hambargh,— 
took possetnon of Schwerin, and 
thence threatened StraUund and Ber- 
lin. The disasters of the gnad armji 
however, rendered this advanced posi- 
tkm no longer secttre ; and Dav<Hist 
fM back upon the Kne of the Steck- 
oitK, which covered Holstein. His «• 
tnation, however^ being on the whde 
better than that of his master, Buona- 
parte wished to draw from him some 
lelief. With this view. General Pe- 
^heaz was dispatched with 5 or 6000 
Vken, with orders to march up the Elbe 
and reinforce the grand army. General 
Walffioden, however, having received 
aodoe of this movement, sud£nly cross* 
ed the Elbe, and {alHng upon Pecheux, 
totally defeated him, made prisoners of 
SI great part of his army, and compelled 
the remainder to fall back upon rlam- 
borgh. The object of the expedition 
was thus frustrated. 

Bemadotte, who seems to have en- 
gaged with perfect sincerity and the ut- 
awst zeal in the cause of the allies, and 
who was anxious to assist it by his pen 
as well as his sword, about this time ^d* 
dressed to Buonaparte a very singular 
ktterof remonstrance. His treachery to 
the Spanish royal family, his measureless 
ambition, his disregard of the lives of 
bis soldiers, his extreme concern for his 
personal safety, his sin^ar conduct in 
abandoning ms army, his want of fore- 
sight as a general, the frantic folly of 
his continental system, his attempt to 
change the order of nature, his igno- 
rance of history, were all touched up- 
#0. <* From the moment,'' said Ber- 
nsdotte, ** when your majesty plunged 
into the interior of Russia, the issue 
was no longer doubtfuL The Empe- 
ror Alexander already, in the month 
of August, foresaw the termination of 
the campaiguy and its prodigious re« 

sidts : all military combinations seemed 
to guarantee that your roajestr would 
be a i>risoner. You escaped tnat dan* 
gtTf sire I but your army, the elite of 
France, of Germany, and of Italy* 
exists no more f There lie, unburied, 
the brave men who served France at 
Fleurus-— Frenchmen who conquered 
in Italy— who survived the burning 
<dime oi Egypt— -and who fixed victory 
vnder your colours at Marengo, at 
Austerlitz, at Jena, and Friedland !-— 
May your soul, sire, be softened at 
this heart-rending picture $ but should 
it be necessary to complete the effect, 
recollect also the death of more than 
a million of Frenchaaen, lyine on the 
field of honour, victims of Sie wan 
which your majesty has undertaken. 

** Your majesty invokes your right 
to the friendship of the King of Swe* 
den. Permit me to remind you, stret 
of the little yalue your majesty attach* 
ed to it, at times when a reciprocity 
of sentiment would have been very use* 
fill to Sweden. When the king, after 
having lost Fmland, wrote to your ma« 
jesty to beg you to preserve for Swe- 
den the isles of Aland, you replied to 
bim« << ^PP^T ^o ^^^ Emperor Alex- 
ander,— he is great and generous;" 
and, to fill up the measure of your in* 
difference, you caused it to be asserted 
in the official journal (Moaiteur of the 
21 8t of September, 1810,) at the mo* 
ment of my departure for Sweden, that 
there had been an interregnum in tha 
kingdom, during which the EngUsh 
were carrying on their commerce with 

** Your system, sire, would interdict 
to nations the exercise of that right 
which they have received from nature^ 
—that of trading with each other, of 
mutually assistine each other, of cor- 
responding and uving in peace } and 
yet the very existence of Sweden de- 
pends upon an extension of commer- 
cial relations, without which she wotdd 
be insuffiotcnt for her own subsistence. 

Digitized by 



Swt9 the leatepft «f Uifcory n^ tbe 
idem pf an universal naonarchy ; aad tbe 
a ca ti mrtt 4>f iad(epetideiice may be 
deadcnedt but caoaot be effaced frem 
tbfc faeatt of napont. May vowr na- 
jesty weigh aU these !ooi»ideraticHia» 
and at laat resAy thisk of that geaeml 
beaee^ the pmmed naaae d£ mUch 
(as oauaed io mtioh blood to flow.-— 
in poMcat iiR^ neither friendship nor 
hatred has i^o^--4he!re ane only d«« 
ties to &Ul totwarda the aationt whoaa 
Frorideaee hm tmamoned tit to -gtk* 
tern* Their Ufwaimdthm privileges 
are Ihe .UeaqJngs which are dear to 
thtm $. «ad if, in order to preserve 
ftkKOf one is.coflfipelkd to seaouAce 
•IdoonnectioQfl^ the prince, who wishea 
to perfism his duty, can never hesitsete 
which course to adopt. Was it not 
yxMir mi^es^ who intermpted our 
commercial rdatioas, by ordmng this 
capture of Swedrah vesseb in the bo« 
SOB of peace ? Was it not the rigour 
of your orders which forbade us every 
kind of comaiunication with the con* 
tinent for three yeaitt, and Which, since 
that period, caused moiie than 50 Swe- 
dish vessels to be detained at Wismar, 
Rofitock, WBid other ports of the Baldc { 
The Duke of Baasano d^erved, that 
your majesty vriU never change your 
System^ and will consider this as a ci^ 
vii.War; whldi indicates that you 
Mean to retain Swedish PomeraniB» 
and will not renounce the hope of gi- 
ving laws to Sweden, and thus degra- 
ding, without running any risk, the 
Swedish name and character* By the 
phrase civil war, you doubtless mean 
a war between aUies } but we know 
the fate to whidi you destine them.— 
A 8 to my personal ambition, I acknow- 
ledge it to be lofty $ it has for its ob» 
jcct to serve the cause of humanityy 
and to secure the independence of the 
Scandinavian peninsula^ Toattainthat 
end, I confidb in. the justice of that 
cause which the king has commanded 
me to defend^ upon the perseverance 

of the nalioB^ aod the fide&y of ita 

BuQoaparle's skuation had become 
critical ( aaii he fek the neoessky of 
resorting to the asoat decided measuna 
for increasing his force.*— *< It is ae» 
cessary thafcaamerous battalioBs shouU. 
arise in the bosom of France,'' said he 
to his minister, Maret, at Dresden t 
and at Paris the En^ress Queen «ad 
Rc«ent quickly ezplaioed ue natute 
aodamouttt of this demasd, She^pro* 
eeeded to the senate, and anaoonced 
the commandi af Buoaaparfee |br « 
fresh tribute of Uood froai d»e Frenck 
people. In 1812, he deasa^ded half 
a Bullion; mlfflS, he hegsfivriih a 
re<|nisitioo of aeariy at ma^ 9 and now 
he demanded no less than §80,0001-— 
The speech of the empress fotaoed a 
most important document iadeedr->-it 
coaiained die con&ssioa of Baona- 
parte, that he was miaUe to make head 
against his opponentsy^that lie no 
longer hoped to msHai a sucoeeafid 
atand beyond the RUae^ He kiie# 
the war upon his p ari a ciples and viewa 
to be odious in France; and, degraded 
and humbled as she vraa by snbmisaiott 
to his authority, he scarcely eqpwtad 
fresh sacrifices from her, uidess be 
could persuade h^r of their absaloto ne* 
cessity to prevent invasion* In the 
abort apeech of the empreaa, more thaa 
in any other document, the altered for* 
tunes of the French rukr were indica- 
ted. A year before he thouriit he had 
but one step to take to render himadf 
the uncontrouled maater of the conta* 
nent. Ue despiaed the experience of 
all former timea,-«-he diadained the 
vraming voice of hiatoryr— he foi^gofc^ 
to uae the language of the Crow& 
Prince, that <* the leasons of history 
reject the idea of universal monarchy^ 
and that the sentiment of independ* 
ence, though it may be deadened ia 
the hearts of nations, can never be de- 
stroyed." What v^as the consequence 
of his presumptuous ambition i A mil- 

Digitized by 





tJiati two y9tks ; «ftd ihMMd nf behg 
jDenr the tccdflnpliflinMnt of Us wi^es, 
te wad how forced ^ tell F^i^tfoi^ that 
«Ik nfi^t etbectto beinVad^i uttkM 
ik^ comented to dsake^i^taUeled ef- 
fbrt^ Hie empress enmmxired to 
ftatit a snspidoDt that the tUkfs toieaDt 
m^itaife?iDer Frattoe; but they had 
jflNBAdf dedared» that ^ they had no 
designs ag;aiasi France ; but that they 
were detenmaed to be goterned by 
their own princes and their own laws.^ 
For the ** agiutions of a degraded 
tlivbne, and a crown withont glory/' 
to Wllkh die empress alluded in her 
ipeeeh> Boonaparte had to blame him« 

The increasing embarrassments of 
the Ffittich army nb longer admitted 
erf concealment. Sir Chsuies Stewart, 
an accurate obsertery and a very able 
tnauf made some judicious refiections, 
n one of his di^atches written about 
this period* << His (Buonaparte's) 
|bu seems to have been/' said Sir 
Chaktes, ** to attack the afiies, if U 
could do to ilrith an evident advantage x 
If flotf to impede their advancct and 
by teenaces gain tiine either to extrt* 
cst)e hims^ from the dangerous pre* 
dicadiettt in which he standt, or to 
^aaxaotnrtt th^ alUe^ oiit of their por- 
tion* The latter he had not done, for 
after aU his marches t6 and firbm the 
Bohemian frontier, the grand allied 
army remained on the spot to which 
it retired after the attaclc upon Dres- 
den ; and Buonaparte had entered the 
Bohemian passes one day, only to quit 
than the next. So ^t in this quarter 
his movements had been of no avsdl, 
while time had -been given to the al- 
lied annies in other parts to uress for- 
ward and close upon him. Meanwhile 
his numerical strensth was decreasin|[ 
duly. The swora had done much, 
sickness had scarcely done less, and 
repeated defeats, with the accompany- 
ing privationsi deprewed the spirits 

and hopes of thfc whole army/'— Up- 
wards of ^OOQ tetters wereJwized upon 
t Fiiench courier.—^ These," said Sir 
Chariest << give the most doleful de« 
tAs of the Frendi army and then: de« 
ieats; the Whole are in the most de- 
sponding Style." 

Cheat, however, as were the advan* 
tft^ of the allies, yet in the present re* 
htive position of the armies there vras 
little prospect that they might imme- 
diate inflict any fotu blow by the 
s^ipenor forces which tbey had at their 
disposal. Buonaparte, from hia eeiH 
tral situation, could still command a 
temporary superiority at any point 
which was seriously tnreatened. The 
grand army had nipeared before Dres* 
%n, but had again retreated. Blucher 
had repeatedly approached from the 
oAer side of the ERie; but 100^000 
men defencbd the passage of the river ; 
and he beat in vain against that im- 
pregnable barrier. The Crown Prince^ 
nowever, was preparing to pass at 
Rosslau, and to advance. This opera- 
tion led to a series of skirmishes. 

Buonaparte had given orders that 
his generals should take Dessau, cost 
what it mi|rht. Information of this 
was received^ by the Crown Prince, hi 
sufficient time to ^ve Major*Oeneral 
-SchtthmAeim notice to evacuate the 
place, ahd retire upon the woHls at the 
tete^dU'pmi. This service was per- 
formed vrithout loss I and the enemy 
did not undertake any thing against 
Schukenheim. The party covering 
the workmen at the tete^it^pontt how- 
ever, advanced to reconnoitre neariy 
as &r as Dessau; the posts of the 
enemy, having ventured out of the 
city, were driven into the streets, and 
the reconnoitering party retired be- 
hind the entrenchments. Bemadotte 
soon after obtained information that 
the enemy at Dessau had received rein- 
forcements, and vras advancing against 
the fete-da'pont* Fidd^Marshal Count 

Digitized by 



tiema against him with 1000 infantry, 
some cavalry, and two pieces of artille 
ly. The enemy hastily retired into the 
town, and shut the gates ; a few young 
o£Ecers and soldiers, hurried on by 
too much bravery, threw themselves, 
in spite of the enemy's shower of bul* 
lets from the houses and walls, on a 
gatei and endeavoured to cut it open 
with axes; but nails and iron bands 
rendered this impossible. Colonel 
Bjomestiema ordered his troops to 
fall back to the tetedupont ; but 
when he had retired about one hundred 
yards, the enemy opened the gate and 
fired on him with three pieces of ar- 
tillery. The colonel halted, returned 
the fire with his artillery, and marched 
on the enemy, who retired into the 
town, and fastened the gates after 
them. In the evening the enemy again 
left the town, and took a direction to- 
wards the bridge across the Mulda, 
which was entrusted to a battalion un- 
der the conunand of Culonel Alder- 
«reutz. This officer crossed the bridge, 
attacked the enemy, and drove him 
briskly into the town, the gates of 
which were again dosed. 

The enemy once more shewed him- 
self with a corps of 7 or 8000 men be- 
tween the Mulda and the Elbe. As the 
allies had drawn their posts in, the ene- 
my seemed disposed to march against 
the entrenchments, and to force them. 
Lieutenant General Sandals put him- 
self at the head of three battalions, 
and advanced from the lines upon the 
enemy. He overthrew him and drove 
him briskly back. As this general 
bad received orders to return to the 
ieteduponty he executed them with 
such precision as could not have been 
excelled on the place of exercise. The 
French in thift affair lost upwards of 
600 men.— The Swedish army having 
thrown a bridge of boats over the 
Elbe, at Rosslau, passed the river, and 
again moved upon Dessau. Its ad- 
vanced posts extended to Raguhn and 

Jamtz, and a jonctioii with Bkcher** 
army was thus accomplished* As the 
third Prussiaii corm ^amUef under 
the command of Greneral Bulow, and 
the corps of General Tanentzetn, had 
already crossed the Elbe, General 
Thumen lemained before Wittenberg. 
This general was induced to continue 
the siege with vigour, since it was ob« 
viouatmit the possession of Wittenberg 
must render the allies masters of the 
Elbe, as this fortress would at once 
cover Berlin, and serve as a depot for 
the allied armies. 

An expedition undertaken by Gene* 
ral Tchernicheff against Caasel waa 
attended with brilliant success. Never 
were boldness, talents, and valour, more 
eminently displayed than on this occn- 
sion. The general marched on the S4th 
to Ekskbcn, the 25th to Rossku, and^ 
avoiding a Westphalian corps under 
the ordm of General BastineUar, pott- 
ed at Heilligenstadt, he made a lateral 
movement, passed through Sondera* 
hausen, and arrived on the 26th, in tiie 
evening, at Muhlhausen. Thence be 
marched upon CasseL Investing the 
city on every side, he ordered the cot- 
sacks and the hussars of Jzum to at- 
tack the enemy's battalions, stationed 
at B^ttenhausen, with six pieces of 
cannon. By a briUiant charge the 
gnns were taken, the enemy dispersed, 
and more than 400 prisoners made. 
The fugitives were pursued into the 
city ; but, as the streets virere barrica- 
doed, the Russians at length fell back. 

Jerome Buonaparte, the intrusive 
King of Westphaha, collected two bat^ 
talions of guards, and a thousand hOrae> 
and fled from Cassel by the road lend- 
ing to Frankfort. Colonel Benken- 
dorff charged four squadrons of hght 
horse, forming part of the escort, not 
one of whom escaped | he took 250 
men and 10 officers.— Tcherniche^ 
received information that General Bat- 
tinellar, with a French corps, was ad- 
vancing to the relief of Cassel. He 

Digitized by 


Chap. 15.] 



BBarchrd during the titgfat of the f8th 
iipoD titlzul^sokf in orcter to meet the 
enemy with hi« entire force. The hot- 
tile corps ditperaed ; only twenty cui- 
rasdert and two gvins were taken The 
troops who followed the king disper- 
sed in like manner ; more than 300 of 
them joined General Tchemicheflf, and 
marched with him on the SOth against 
CasseL The Russian general made use 
of the artillery cajptured from the ene- 
aiy» and cannonaded the town. The 
Lieipztg gate» with the cannon planted 
there, was carried hy Colonel Benken- 
dorff. Tchemicheff then offered terms 
of capitulation to the general of division 
AIix, who obtained a free passage for 
the French and Westphalian troops 
with their arms and military baggage* 
The city was occupied on the erenmg 
of the SOth by the Russians ; the joy of 
the inhabitants was enthusiastic. The 
greater part of the Westphalian troops 
ranged themselves under the banners 
of the allies ; and a fotal blow was 
thus struck against the influence of 
the French in the kingdom of West- 

This chai>ter may be concludedi by 
a recapitulation of the important events 
which had lately occurred. In the 
month of August, the French attempt- 
ed to invade at once Mecklenburgh, 
Swedish Pomerania, the Middle Mark, 
Silesia, and Bohemia. In the month 
of September, after vain efforts, repel- 
led on all sides, they were driven 
across the Elbe near Hamburgh, wed- 
ged into a comer of Lusatia, expelled 
from Bohemia, with considerable loss of 
men and cannon, and disturbed in their 
hue of communication between Dres- 
den, Altenburg, Leipzig, and Erfurt. 
Towards the end of the month, the 
combined armies passed the Elbe. Vic- 
tory opened to the corps of General 
Walmoden, the Old Mark, Luneberg, 
and the route of Hanover and Bohe- 
mia ; made the Crown Prince mas- 
ter of the duchies of Anholt, and 

other provinces {omaeAf l^rusnan, and 
secured to Blucher the passage of the 
Elbe at Elster, his march upon Leip- 
zig by turning Wittenberg, and his 
communication with the army of the 
north of Germany. 

The Russnn and Prusnan armies, 
immoveable in the position which they 
had chosen in Bohemia from Toplitz 
to the Elbe, waited the enemy in the 
fatal valley of Culm, received aim with 
courage, drove lum back ^ as often at 
he dared to descend from the moun- 
tains, wasted him with famine, and 
demoralized his armies. Dresden, in- 
stead of being a point from which 
Buonaparte attacked, now became to 
him a point of retreat. Meanwhile, 
the Austrian ^rnvy extended itself on 
one side as far as rreyberg, Chemnitz, 
and Altenburg ; and on the other to- 
wards Thurinra and Bavaria; it 
pushed forward atrong detachments* 
and covered powerful diversions, ac- 
complished by partisans at once brave 
and fortunate. Where was Buona- 
parte during the whole of September ? 
At Dresden and its vicinity ; again at 
Dresden and its vicinity. He sent his 
sick and wounded to Leipzig and Er- 
furt ; kept the King^of Saxony and 
his whole family- at Dresden, to give 
himself the sembkince of security, and 
continued to exercise a despotic sway, 
which was now confined to the capital 
of a petty kingdom. From Dres- 
den those bags otjetters were dispatch- 
ed, which being intercepted and pub- 
lished, communicated just ideas ot the 
true situation of the French army, and 
of the disposition of the troops. 

The treaty of alliance, concluded 
at Toplitz, between Austria, Russia, 
and Prussia — ^the negociations opened 
with Bavaria — the unequivocal move- 
ments of the grand combincfd army 
towards the Maine — ^the siege of Wit- 
tenburg resumed with vigour — the junc- 
tion of the army of Blucher with that 
of the Crown Prince, proved to Buo- 

Digitized by 



imparte the ^fSctiities of bis Aitttalion 
more ttkctudXty than his raimter and 
generals had hi^erto been able to do. 
Russia, Austriai and Prassiat mth 
tually guaranteed their states on the 
footing of 1805 ; they set out with 
the unchangeaUe priiiciple of not per- 
mitting a single French bayonet to re- 
main in Germany* Already the sceptre 
of the intrusive King of Westphalia 
was broken in pieces. The city of 
Casseli by the cstrtiont of General 

Tchemicfaefff had placed iti keya fa 
the hands of the Crown Prince. Tlie 
dd order of things succeeded to the' 
most o]{»pressire tyranny. Tfaetrenehes 
were opened before Dantzig, Stectin^ 
and Glogau. These garrisons werfe 
destitute of necessaries ( therhadnMoy 
sick. Magdebm^ also was ill protisioii^ 
ed ; and Duonaparte was plating e^ttk 
the fortresses on the Rhine in a sttte 
of defence. 

Digitized by 






Crsnd Mcfoemfnl of the Allied Amuea^^'becisioe Battle o/Leipdgf and Rout 
of the French. — Their Flight to the Khi^.-^The Combined Armies pass the 
French Frontier. 

The operatioiia of the allied trmieis, 
althoum^ they had already been at*" 
tendeawkh important results, bad not 
been of so decisive a characte|- as to in- 
terrupt altogether the communications, 
or to break the strength of the grand 
French army at Dres£n« Should Buo- 
naparte be able to maintain his ground 
k that capital, until the immense levies 
now raising in France could arrive to 
his support, it became evident that the 
contest might be prolonged to an in- 
definite dunition ; the allies, therefore^ 
perceived the necessitjr of more vigor- 
ous efforts* Their torces had been 
augmented by the arrival of General 
Beningsen, at the head of a Russian 
corps of 40,000 men« Phtoff, the cos- 
sack chief, who had been for some 
time absent from the scene of active 
cjperationst now re-appesued } his war- 
riors formed part of Bemngsen's corps 
which joined the grand army in Bohe- 
mia. So great and seasonable a rein- 
farcemcnt determined the leaders of 
the Bohemian armj to make a grand 
movement on their left, and, ascending 
from Bohemia, to interpose between 
Dresden and the communication witti 

the Rhine. Phtoff, with his cossacks, 
led the advance, and cut up a French 
corps, under Lefebvre, which had been 
sent by Buonaparte to dear the road 
from Dresden* ^he Bohemian army 
proceeded in three divisions towards 
Chonnitz and Freiburffh,^-*the Rus- 
sians by Commouu,— Ue Prussians by 
Brix, and the Austjians from Toplitz. 
The force of the Russians and Prus- 
sians amounted to 90,000, that of the 
AuBtrians to 100,000 men. 

General Blucher and the Crowa 
Prince at the same time advanced, and 
formed a junction.— The inarch of 
Blucher was truly astonishing. He 
had with him about 60,000 men ; — he 
brought also all his cannon and bag- 
gage and a bridge equipage ; and yet 
he efiiected this great movement vfith 
incredible velocity. The Crown Prince 
having forced the Elbe on the Sd of 
October, and carried the entrenched 
viUaffe of Wertemberg, passed over his 
whole army the next Say at Ackenand 
Rosdau. Ney immediately fell back 
fromDesasu. Bemadotte established 
his head*auarters there on the 4th, and 
proceeded next day to Reguhn, on the 

Digitized by 



Mulda» to the southward of Dessau. 
His Tanguard occupied Cothen^ be- 
tween the Mulda and the Saale, and 
Bernbourg» which is situated on the 
last mentioned river. The armies of 
the north of Germany, and of Silesia* 
amounting together to 130»000 men, 
made a combined movement on the 5th 
towards Leipzig.— Schwartzenburgh, 
with the mam body of the Bohemian 
army* was at Chemnitz on the 8th^— 
Generals E^ist and Wittgenstein were 
near Ahenberg. — At Lutzen, the Bo- 
hemian army communicated with the 
advance of the other combined armies 
under Count Woronzoff; so that a 
fine was formed, in Buonaparte's rear» 
ftom Ailcben to Altenber^, Chem. 
nitz, and the Bohemian frontier. — Ne- 
ver, perhaps, had a grander movement 
been accomplished. The allies had 
now effected their, mat object of pla- 
cing themselves in tne rear of the ene- 
my ; and it is impossible not to ad- 
mire the skiH, boldness, and activity 
displayed upon this occasion. 

An event now occurred of the most 
embarrassing natureto the French, Ba- 
varia had long been the ally of France, 
but whether attached by fear or fa- 
vour, it had been difficult to deter- 
mine; Buonaparte had certainly been 
liberal to her ; he had aggrandized her 
at the expence of Austria ; he evi- 
dently wished to raise up this state as 
a barrier to protect the French terri- 
tory.— There were many circumstan- 
ces, however, which might prevent 
Bavaria from being deeply affected by 
these benefits.— She had been treated 
as a vassal, she had been obliged to 
unite her troops to the French armies, 
and to send them to the extremities of 
Europe, to shed their blood in wars 
in which she could take no tnterest. 
The tenure by which crowns at the 
disposal of Buonaparte were held, 
•ould not inspire Bavaria with much 
confidence. When his own brothers, 
whom he had raised to thrones, were» 

in a moment of caprice, at once preci- 
piuted from them, the destinies of 
others connected with him by no natu- 
ral ties, could not be consideml as very 
secure. Such sentiments on the part 
of the Bavarian monarch, were more 
than seconded by the people, who 
shared the flame of patriotism bj 
which every German breast was filled! 
In the army this feeling was very ar- 
dent ; and remonstrances from that 
quarter are said to have had consider- 
able influence in producing the deter* 
mination of the cabinet A superior 
Austrian corps, under Prince Reuss^ 
had already entered the Bavarian ter« 
ritory ; and the French arMy assem* 
bled on the Maine, and from which 
Buonaparte had premised assistance to 
Bavaria, had in the exigency o nia 
affairs been directed to repair to the 
Elbe. The king therefore suddenly- 
determined to dissolve all the ties 
which united him to France, and to 
afford to the cause of the allies his fuH 
and cordial co-operation. A treaty of 
aHiance and concert between Austria 
ind Bavaria was accordingly signed by' 
Prince Reuss and General Wrede, on 
the 8th of October. Wrede, with 
55,000 Bavarian troops, and ^5,000 
Austrians, wfai^h were placed under 
his command, immediately co-operated 
with the combined armies. 

In this most critical state of afiairt, 
Buonaparte had but one part to act. 
He had no choice but to quit Drea- 
den without delay, as he could no 
longer indulge any reasonable hope of 
maintaining it $ and, with the utmost 
expedition, to concentrate his whole 
forces upon Leipzig, and the line oF 
the Saale. He might tbub have im-' 
peded the movements of the two great 
portions of the allied army, and might 
have been enabled to maintain himself 
for some time in his new position. A 
succession of similar movements might 
indeed have manoeuvered him out of 
Germany. For the present, however^ 

Digitized by 


Chap. 16.J 



be remained nnbiokeni and might have 
established himself on the line of the 
Maine, a most adTantageeus position, 
which defended France by tnreaten- 
ing the flank of any enemy who might 
enter it» and, at the same time, afford 
ed am opemng into the T^ry heart of 
Germany. But his mind was not yet 
brought down to the lerel of his ror- 
tone ; he refused to bend beneath tha 
&te which pressed on him, and per- 
tiated to act upon principles suited to 
other times and other circumstances 
tban those to which he was now redu- 
ced. He was thus led to prefer a 
bolder plan, which the allies had left 
open for him* He resolved to cross 
toe Elbe ; to extend himself along the 
<^posite bank from Dresden to Mag* 
deburg, and thence to push detached 
oorps into the he^rt ot Prussia, and 
even upon Berlin ; but this course was 
imprudent and chimerical Inferior in 
the field, and with the entire popula* 
tion hostile, he had no chance of ob- 
taining a footing in the Prussian teni* 
tory; while, by suffering the allied 
armies to operate in his rear, he laid 
the sure foundation of disaster, if not 
of total destruction. 

This plan, howerer, being resolved 
upon, no immediate obsucle opposed 
Its execution. On the 7th of Octo- 
ber, Buonaparte set out from Dres- 
den, preceded by the greater part of 
his army, which directed its march, 
aot upon Leipzig or the line of re- 
treat, but upon Wittenburg, and the 
bridges by which the Swedish* and 
Prasstan armies had crossed. There 
was nothinflr to make head against 
him : The bridges were taken or de- 
stroyed ; the blockade of Wittenberr 
was raised; General Tauentsein, with 
bis small army of 10,000 men, was 
driven back precipitately upon Berlin, 
and the utmost ahrm seized that ca- 

The Crown Prince and Blucher, 
upon learning this new direction of 

the French army, although they eoold 
not anticipate fronb it any unfa:foar<' 
able issue to the aontest, Mt the 
necesrity of making a correspondm^ 
change in their own arrangements. 
They determined to follow dose ill 
the rear of Buonaparte, and to be 
ready to act against him wherever he 
might be found. With this view they 
repassed the Saale and the Ebter, ana 
were preparing to gain the other side 
of the Elbe, when they learned that % 
complete change was observable in the 
movements oi the eneosy. The divi« 
sions which had passed the Elbe and 
threatened Berlin had been recalled^ 
and all the different corps were mo^ 
vin^ apparently in the direction of 
Leipzig. Buonaparte, in £ict, was 
now hastening, with all his forces, to 
that field of action where the fate of 
£im>pe was so soon to be decided* 

The reason assigned by Buonaparte 
himself for so sud&n a change of ptan» 
was the intelligence just received, that 
Bavana had not only dissolved the al- 
liance which had so Ions; united her to 
France, but had conclu£d with the al-; 
ties a treaty of co-operation, and that 
her armies were about to act in con* 
junction with those of Austria% - Such 
events might no doubt have aferded a 
sufficient reason for this chiinge of 
movement,' had other reasons beea 
wanting; yet very slight reflection 
might have sufficed to convince himr 
of the absurd nature of the plan upon 
which he had been acting. This in- 
stance of vacillation in his conocils, 
however, was the source of irrepa- 
rable injury to his affairs. By not 
marching at once to Leipzig and the 
Saale, he suffered the allied armies to 
conduct their operations unmolested 
in his rear $ and he was afterwards 
driven to retrace his steps when it 
vras too bte to reap the benefits 
which might have been derived from 
morevigrorous and seasonable measures^ 

When Buonaparte arrived at Leip- 

Digitized by 



sig, die place was still in the posses* 
aioD of bis troops j but hostile anmes 
weie on erery side, within view of its 
walls. The United armies of the Crowft 
Fiinoe and of Blucher extended on the 
north froas the Mulda to the Saale ; 
the annr of Silesia communicated along 
the Saale with the grand army> whi(£ 
€Sten4ed on the south from that river 
totheM«lda. The two armies touch* 
ad each otheir only- at this es^tremity 9 
ahey were thus in sofltie4egree separa* 
tedatoi:bei:pQintsi but thdropposiae 
lines were so jMac that they couul oom« 
mvnicaie by s^aalsy and hear the sound 
ofebch other's cannon. Thevthusobn 
viiited, ia a.great a»aasttret the danger 
<rf> separation ; and the French gained 
litlle or no benefit by thtis bterposi* 
tjodf They were obliged to divide their 
fEMce to niake head«gainst the north-r 
em army on the one 6ide» and the. 
grand army on the other ; and as they 
were preseed into so narrow a spacer' 
those bold and sweqping manceuvtea 
wUoh they were accustmcd to pnc* 
tiae with so mneh success were ako* 
gethcr precluded* 

The 16tb of October^ the day im* 
Biediately following the arrival of Buo« 

Sairte» was fix^ upon by Prince 
iwartKenberg for a general attack 
ea aU^ the Fmdi poStioos around 
Xicipzig. (te the northi the French 
line esfiNnded from that dty through 
Ddateh and Bitterfidd to the Mulds. 
Thearmy of the Crown Prince formed 
the left of the opposite line» reaching 
from Wetten to Zartag. But as Ge# 
neral Blucher was on the right, and 
liad his head*qttartera pushed cio Grross 
Ktrgalt he was nearttt Leipzig ; and 
it was therefore determined that on his 
aide the grandeffort diould be made.«»- 
Haiing made his dispottti(ms» the Prus* 
aian general accor£ngly attacked, in 
the mommgiy three Faench coips conw 
aanded by Marshal Ney* The em* 
my made a deqperate resistance ; sew* 

ral of the villages in dispute were five 
or six times taken and retaken ; but at 
kn^h the French were dmen from aH 
their positions, and forced to retm be* 
hind the Pardia, vrhich. immediate 
covered Leipzig. The French lost iit 
Ais bactle forty pieces of cannon, and 
12^000 prisoners; General Bludier^tf 
loss was estimated at or 7000 kitted 

On the same day, a simuhaneoaa 
attack sras made on the other Mm 
by the grand Bdiemian army in due 
neighbottiteod cf Waduur and 1m* 
bert Walkowitz. The Russians ht* 
g^an by storming two fortified Poa« 
tions whidi covered the front ot the 

ly's centre. Bnomipaite, however^ 
coMected the whole mass of Ins cavalry, 
wiiich, comounded by Murat, suc- 
ceeded in breaking the centre of tlie 
aifies. The moment was critkal; to^ 
tal defeat might have been the cooae- 
qisence; but six regiments of Aua« 
tnan cuirassiers advanced, gallantly 
withstood the efforts of the enemy, 
and succeeded in checking his progress.' 
The French gained some ground ; but, 
upon the whole, this desperate and 
sanguinary action made no material 
diange in the relative position and 
strength of die two armies. 

On the 17th, the dlies made a pauset 
with the view of bringing up their 
remforcementa. Greneral Bennmgaew 
had, on die advance of Prince3diwart- 
zenberfff been left to observe Dresden 
wMi zhrgc army ; but when Buooa* 
parte quitted that capital, and left it 
defended by St Cyr alone, vrith a gar* 
nson of 16,000 men, so great a force 
vras no longer neeeasary tor the pur* 
poses of observation, and acdve ope« 
radons against Dresden could be de- 
kyedvn£ perfect safety till the great 
battle was decided. Biennings^ vraa 
therefore directed to leave merely a 
detachment before Dresden, and with 
his whole rtmahiing force to push for- 

Digitized by 


CSAT. I6.3 




Wtfd M eg p ediriomly m poasibb to 
join tbe ffraul amy. 

It is £fictdt to account for the io* 
activity n whick Buonaparte rearaiiied 
dm^g thin importaat day. Aivave» 
I he mmt have beea> of uie advant»> 

I whidi theaUiti were derimg from 

I delajf a vise policy surely dietai^ 
ted that he dia«dd cither have attack- 
ed then before their retniBroenents 
ooold arme, or that he should have 
aeixed the opportunity of effecting his 
retreat with less imdmation* It was 
iaoDosistent with his usual systeat thus 
tolaiger» andaBow the allies to choose 
their own tiaaB far attack— nSome mi^ 
norchaagesy howerer^ were made ia 
the dispositions of the French army $ 
it was dnMirn closer round Leipoig. 
On the north it was withdrawn behind 
the liver Partfaa, which afforded an 
advantaj^eous defensive line ; on the 
aoothy It retired froai Liebect Wal* 
koivitx, and Wachar, wbcro the battle 
of the 16th had been fiought, into, the 
interior Hne of ConoeiTitZy Prolisthey* 
dSf and Steteriti. The Franch sac* 
ceeded also on this day in making aa 
CMong through the allied line afcng 
the Saale^ in t& dkectaon of Weissen* 
fifils. Thus they at once secured to 
t h ems elve s a retreat, and cut off the 
cowmnnieation, unless by signals^ be» 
twecn the allied armies.. 

The allies^ hovFever» having brought 
up an ^eir rebforcenoentS} £tenmned 
on the following day to execute their 
designs^ and to brinj^ the fate of En^ 
rope to this final crisis. The ^rntt 
battle which fettowed was not distin* 
guished by any bdUl mancsuvres, or 
striking vidsutudes. The efforts of 
the allied armies were chiefly confined 
to 8torming> by prodigious efforts, the 
French positions. On the notth, the 
leading attack was made by the Crowa 
Prince, who was now much farther ad- 
vanced than he had been on the 16th, 
Being at the head of the Partha 
rivery by which the passage is hast 

difficult, he was in the most advanta* 
gstom position for approaching Leio- 
nig. Bluchar, therdbrsy to enable 
him to act with gicotcr effect* rda- 
forced him vrtth dO^OOO men from 
his own army* The. passage vras cS* 
fected almost vrithout resMtanec^ and 
5Q0O prisoners were taken at Tauduu 
The eaem)r fell badk to^nuds Lopftigb 
covering Us retreat by the viUaffes of 
SofmerUt* Parmsdorf» and Scfimfe* 
ktt^ From these, howevcVf be vraa 
finally driven. The success at this 
point was gnsatly promoted by aa uar 
expected event ; a large hodjr of Wes^ 
pludian and Saxon troops* the latter 
bringiDg with them tvnety-two pjacea 
of artillery, came over irom the opp^ 
site, army ; for aldiovffk their soveretge 
still fought on the side of France, OSf 
considered the allied cause as f Acsra* 
They aeoepted at onoe the invtUtiee 
of the Crown Prince^ who offered t# 
head them as they turned their guaa 
i^gainst the enemy. A delay in the ar* 
rival of the Swedish cannon rendered 
this unexpected supply of the hig^st 

On the side of the grand Bohemiaa 
army, akhou|rh the enemy had direct 
ed to that pomt his chief effortsof re* 
sistance, the success was still aM»e de» 
cisive. The allied corps* pressiw la 
from all quarters, casned every tmng 
beloee them. Towards evening, they 
formed a junction with the army dT 
the north | and the united forces of 
all the nowevs wene estabUBhed beneath 
the vruls of Leipeig.* - 

Buonaparte felt at ki^th, and too 
late, that no means remained to him of 
furUier resbtanee. A great part of Us 
army had pesidied in Am precedkig 
battles ( and the preponderance of his 
enemies, already ceoskkrable, had been 
hur^lj aufi;aAented. Of those who it^ 
flMuned in his ranks, a great proportion 
were secretly hostile to him, and were 
the more fonnidable that they had not 
yet openly declared diemsdves. AU 

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hk outposts aftd fortified lines were 
gone ; and no prospect now remained 
for him, since tbe victorious armies were 
prepared to storm his last retreat. He 
no longer hesitated^ therefore, to re» 
tire by the only war which still re* 
mained open^ and toe evening had 
scarcely closed when the whole French 
«rmy beg^n to defile by the, road lead- 
ing to Wcissenfels. The passage, sar- 
rowed as it was at presentf was attend* 
edwith extreme difficulty. Five or 
aix rivers, nwning parallel, and near 
to each other, and requiring bridges 
t»ver each, formed a long and narrow 
, defile, through which an encumbered 
surmy could march only slowly and 
with difficulty. Day broke, and a 
purt of the troms were still in Leipxig. 
Buonaparte ordered the magistrates of 
Leipzig to send a deputation, request- 
ing that hostilities might be suspend- 
ed, for the purpose ofarran^iag a ca* 
pitulation. The object of this demand 
was evident $ he wuhed to retreat un- 
molested, and to extricate his army 
from their present embarrassments* It 
was accordingly determined that such 
a mpite shomd not be granted. The 
Emperor Alexander received the mes* 
aengrer in person ; and, in presence of 
the amy, announced to him this reso* 
lotion. The allied forces were then 
led on to the attack ; after a short re- 
sistance the city was carried ; and about 
eleven o'clock of the forenoon, the 
Emperor of Russia, the King of Prus* 
aia, and the Crown Prince of Sweden, 
arriving from different quarters, met 
in the great square of Leipzig, amid 
the acdamatioas of the army and of 
the people. Buonaparte had quitted 
the city about two hours before, lea- 
ving a large party of his armjr. To 
them the disaster was greatly inorea- 
sed, when the confederate forces^ on 
entering the city, were ioincd by all 
the remaining S^on and other Ger- 
man troops. The French, now at- 
tacked and fired upon from all quar* 

ters, no longer knew whither to turn $ 
the narrow brid^ was soon choaked 
by crowds of fugitives trampling upon 
each other. The passage was stop^ 
ped; prisoners were taken by thou- 
sands; and of the few who endeavour* 
ed to save themselves by swimming, 
the greater part perished in the wa- 
ters. The whole rear-guard of the 
French army, including some of ita 
most distinguished commanders, fell 
into the hands of the confederatea. 
Among the prisoners were Regnier, 
Brune, Vallery, Bertrand, and Lauria- 
ton. Macdonald with difficulty gaia* 
ed, by swimming, the opposite bank % 
but rrince Pontatowsky, endeavour* 
ing to do the same, sunk, and waa 
drowned. The wounded, to the Bum* 
her of S0,000, were all taken ; and 
the King of Saxony, with his whole 
court, ranked among the prisoners. It 
was now too late for this monarch to 
obtain any merit by joining the cause 
of the allies ; and, as against his ordera 
the whole of his -troops had already 
ranged themselves under their standU 
ard, he vras no longer capable of ren* 
dering them any service. It was jod* 
ffed proper to inflict some chastisement 
for that injury w^h, on a former oe* 
casion, the common cause had sustain- 
ed from him, and he was sent, under a 
guard, to the castle of Eysebnach. 

Some striking passages are to be 
found in the account of these great ope« 
rations given by the Crown Prince. 
^ As theenemy was obliged,'' says Ber* 
nadotte, *' to make his retreat by the 
defiles of Pleisse, the baggage, cannon, 
and troops, pressed peumell through 
the narrow passes which remained open 
to them, and which were soon choak* 
ed up by this general disorder. None 
thought but of making lus own ea* 
cape. The advanced j;uards of the 
army of Silesia and of Senningsen en- 
tered, almost at the same time, through 
the other gates of the city. 

«« The results of the battle of Leip- 

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i^lA^. 16.] 



are inntienfle and decMve. He 
_ not ouit Leipeig in persdn until 
I o'clock in the monmig of die 19th, 
Kadhig that a fire of musketry had 
adready commenced at the Ranstaht 
gate, towards Lutzen, he was ohliged 
to depart br the Pegau gate. The al- 
fied armies had taken 15 irenerals, and 
unoo^ them GrnentU Tcegnier ud 
Lmnstout commanding con»<f'armie. 
Prince Poniatowsky was drowned in 
attenqyting to pass the Elster. The 
body of General Dumoreartier, chief 
of the staff of die 11th corps, was 
jbaod in the rtter, and more than lOOQ 
men were drowned in it. The Duke 
of Basiano escaped on foot. Marshal 
Ney is supposed to have been wound* 
ed« More than 250 pieces of cannon, 
^00 caissons, and abote 15,000 pri- 
toners, have fallen into the hands of 
the aSies, besides several eagles and 
Colours. The enemy has abandoned 
more than 23,000 sick and wounded, 
with the whole of the hospital esta- 

« The total loss of the French army 
most exceed 60,000 men. According 
to every calculation, the Emperor Na- 
poleon has been able to save from the 
general disaster not more than 75,000 
Or BOfiOO men. The allied armies are 
in motion to pursue him, and every 
moment are brought in prisoners, bag- 
gage, and artillery. The German and 
Pohsh troops desert from the French 
standards in crowds $ and every thing 
announces thdt the liberty of Germany 
hu been conquered at Leipzig. 

^ It is inconceivable how a man, who 
Commanded in thirty pitched batUes, 
and who had exalted himself by mili- 
tary glory, in appropriating to himself 
dot of aul the old French generals, 
diould have be